How To Help

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It is hard when you hear that a loved one has been diagnosed with a mental illness.  You can feel lost, hopeless and confused. That is a natural reaction.

You will want to know how you can help and support them.  In this section I am going to give you some advice on how to support a loved one and how to look after you too.

Looking after a loved one

  • Treat them normally.  They haven't changed they are still the same person.
  • Attend appointments - Go with them to the doctors or take them to counselling appointments and group therapies.
  • Understand their medication - Find out how the medication helps them, if there are any side effects you need to watch for.
  • Talk - Ask them how they feel they are getting on, let them cry, scream and shout if it makes them feel better.
  • Do not pressure them. - If they are scared to go out don't push them to leave the house straight away.  Help them build it up. Let them stand at the front door, then progress slowly from there.
  • Reassure - Remind them you are there, they are not alone.

It is simple things like that which make all the difference to someone.

Looking after yourself

  • Educate yourself - look up on the condition you will then have a  better understanding and won't feel as scared.
  • Have a break - If you are caring for someone do not feel guilty for needing time for you.  Ask someone to take over to you have a cup of tea or even go out for a while. You are allowed!!
  • Attend a group - Some health boards run carer groups so you can go out and meet other who are in the same situation as you. You are not alone either.

There are a few Mental Health organisations who can point you in the right direction.  You can find a list and links of the main UK based organisations on the left hand side of my blog.

All my love
Angela x

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