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Ask about mental health

KatDunnKatDunn Member Posts: 5 Listener
edited April 9 in Guest blogs
Hi all, I'm Kat and I work for Mind, the mental health charity, as an Information Officer. Every year, one in four of us will experience a mental health problem. Anyone can be affected, at any time in your life. We know how hard it can be to talk about mental health, but we believe no one should face a mental health problem alone.

I'd be very happy to answer any questions you have about mental health - big and small! If there's something on your mind, please do ask. I'll be here until the end of the week, hopefully answering between 4-5 every day. Get in touch!


  • helsbarneshelsbarnes Member Posts: 1
    Hi. I was diagnosed with PTSD after the birth of my son three years ago. I had CBT last year and am on anti depressants. In the last few months I have been extremely anxious and angry and struggling, particularly at work. Do you ever recover from PTSD?
  • KatDunnKatDunn Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Hi helsbarnes,

    Thank you for your message and I'm sorry to hear that you're having a difficult time right now. Reaching out for help is a really important and brave step, and I know how hard it can be to take it.

    You can recover from PTSD, and there are lots of options to help you. You can read our information on PTSD and treatments here:

    One place to start could be to talk to your doctor about how you are feeling. If you found CBT useful before, you could think about taking a refresher course. You can read Mind's information on CBT here: There are also resources for you to learn CBT techniques by yourself. You can access MoodGym for free online here:, and your doctor can refer you to online/CD resources like FearFighter and Beating the Blues.

    You could also think about whether you might find it useful to reach out to online support groups and organisations. PANDAS is a charity that supports people experiencing ante- or post-natal illnesses. They have a specific section on PTSD here: as well as support groups and further information. Another organisation is the Birth Trauma Association who offer support and information:

    If you find you're particularly struggling at work, you could think about speaking to your employer about ways they could help you manage. You can find out more about mental health in the workplace and your rights here:

    You mind also find our information about coping as a parent when you're also living with a mental health problem useful:

    I hope this information is useful - there are lots of people who understand what you're going through, and lots of options to help you recover. If you have anything else you want to ask, please do!

    Take care,
  • Bubbles222Bubbles222 Member Posts: 1
    edited January 2015
    Hello, I have 2 young children under 5. My first child was prem and taken away from me at birth due to complications. He was fine but was diagnosed with a rare Brain condition not related to birth. Even dealing with consultants locally is hard when they Mis read signs and tell me I'm wrong when his specialist in London informs me of the right facts. My 2nd baby which I was excited to be normal was a. Emergency Csection whilst I was put to sleep due to time being an issue. He was fine but due to my complications after with blood loss I didn't hold him till later but was in awful pain. My eldest child is hard work daily with autism being just one of the issues. He needs sedatives to sleep. And ambulances have been called a few times a year for life threatening situations. I cry all the time at the moment and am finding life hard. My husband works away mon-Friday now which has taken away my evening time of going out exercising which I used as an escape. My mum is brilliant with helping and has him to sleep when I'm exhausted from being up in the night. She thinks I need to speak to my GP about depression. My child doesn't understand but I say horrible hurtful things at 3am when I'm so tired. I also think horrible things and just feel like running away from life but I know that's not an option. It's not his fault I know but feel like I need to blame someone for how he is. I hate being awake every night when I'm tired. Last night I didn't sleep till 5.45am and had to call work who are understanding to book the day off. I feel like If I actually told the doctor what I say and think about my child she'd probably contact social services! I'd never walk out the house an leave but at 4am I'm thinking should I just go and come back. But I wouldn't as it's no safe. Life can't be changed but I struggle to go to sleep I cry a lot and put on a brave face whilst every says your such a good mum for what you go through and the worry of when something bad may next happen. Would anti depressants help with something that long term can't actually be changed. I feel from birth to now nothing went to plan and I didn't even register Id had a baby probably because he was in hospital for 5 weeks and I was at home but visiting him daily. Sorry to have waffled!
  • JenniferUJenniferU Member Posts: 124 Courageous
    Hi Kat,

    Quite a few people on Scope's Facebook page are asking about Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), and what they can do to feel happier during the dark and gloomy days of winter.

    Any advice for them would be much appreciated!

  • KatDunnKatDunn Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Hi Bubbles222,

    Thank you for your message. That sounds like a really difficult situation to be in, but I'm glad to hear your mum is supportive.

    If you're feeling like you need a bit of extra support right now with your mood, one option could be to speak to your GP. It's really understandable to worry about opening up about your thoughts and feelings. Lots of parents have difficult thoughts and feelings, no matter what their family situation is. If you're worried about what to say, you might find it helpful to write down what you want to say and take it with you to the doctors. This could help you make sure you focus on the things you think are most important. Your GP can talk to you about what support might be available. This could be antidepressants if you feel that's right for you, or you could consider talking treatments.

    Everyone finds different things helpful. Antidepressants are really helpful for some people, but other people prefer talking treatments. It's important to find what works for you, and if the first thing you try doesn't, remember that there are other things you can try. You can find information about antidepressants on our website here: and about talking treatments here: CBT is a talking treatment that a lot of people find really useful, and you can do some of the treatment yourself online. Our website has some more information and links to online resources:

    If you're not comfortable talking to your GP, there are lots of other options you could think about. Our network of local Minds offer all sorts of services and support, like counseling or support groups. You can contact our Infoline on 0300 123 3393/[email protected]/text 86463 9am-6pm on weekdays, and our team can help you find out what support might be available.

    And remember, if you need someone to talk to, the Samaritans are always there to listen to anything that's upsetting you, any time of night or day. You can call them on 0845 90 90 90/[email protected] and they'll always be there to listen and support you.

    You're not alone, and there are lots of options for you to find support. If you want to ask anything else, do just let me know :)

  • KatDunnKatDunn Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Hi JenniferU,

    SAD is something that affects a lot of us, and it can be really hard to feel cheerful when it's cold and dark. But there are lots of ways to look after yourself when you're not feeling so well.

    You can read more about SAD and its treatments on our website here: If you're diagnosed with SAD by your doctor, there are lots of options for support depending on what you would find useful.

    Even if you're not diagnosed with SAD, it can still be hard to stay mentally healthy during the dark winter months. We've got lots of tips and ideas about how to improve and maintain your mental wellbeing on our website here:

    I hope this helps!

  • BubblyBBubblyB Member Posts: 1
    Hi Kat,

    My fiancé is suffering from severe anxiety and did have panic attacks last year following a string of friends and colleagues passing away within a 12-18 month period. He has had CDT which has helped him considerably. However, his father passed away in October following a short illness and December his severe anxiety has presented itself again. It seems to be social or group environments where he finds things difficult. When it is just us two he is fine. He is referring to his methods if coping, however, I am finding it difficult to know what to do or say when I know it is happening to him?

    We are going away with friends this weekend which we booked some time ago, I know he is getting worked up already about it.

    Would you have any advice for me?

  • CommunityTeamCommunityTeam Posts: 87

    Scope community team

    Posting on behalf of Kat:

    Hi Rebecca,

    Thank you for your message, and I’m sorry to have not been able to reply to you earlier. It sounds like you’re having a difficult time trying to support your finance right now, it can be really tough when our loved ones aren’t well and we don’t always know how to help.

    But there are lots of things you can do to help. You might want to take a look at our information about how friends and family can help people experiencing anxiety or panic attacks: If your fiancé has talked about his coping methods then it sounds like he might have some ideas of how to help himself. You could try speaking to him about what help he would want from you, and what he would find useful.

    If he’s found CBT useful in the past, you could try and support him in asking for another course. There are also resources to learn CBT techniques by yourself. MoodGym is free online here:, and a doctor can refer your fiancé to online/CD resources like FearFighter and Beating the Blues.

    Another option you might want to suggest to your fiancé, or contact yourself, is the organisation No Panic which works specifically with anxiety. You can find them online here: and they have a phoneline you can call to find out more about what support they offer.

    Remember to take care of yourself as well. It can be really challenging trying to support a loved one, so take time to look after yourself and to make sure you’ve got support as well.

    Take care,
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