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Mental health crisis UK: Its not just you: Lockdown is causing a rise in mental health problems

by Shannon Garner. Published Tue 09 Feb 2021 12:02

While the world has been struggling to overcome the onslaught of Covid-19 for the past year, a new health crisis is looming large on the horizon, with a dramatic rise in mental health issues across the whole population.

A recent survey by Ipsos MORI, where they interviewed 1,065 people aged 18-75, shows that 60 percent of those surveyed had admitted to finding it harder to remain a positive mental outlook during lockdown.

Time to Talk, a remote mental health charity based in the United Kingdom, strives to provide a safe, comfortable and interactive environment, which can be accessed whenever people need it most.

Graham Carrington, Time to Talk membership & engagement manager said: “We provide a safe environment for people to talk.

"We put a focus on peer to peer support, so it’s people who aren’t doctors.

“It’s good to talk with somebody and just let it out sometimes.”

Graham added the charity has been online since 2017: “The way the charity has been set up is quite good, because we can cater to people’s preferences in how they want to talk to someone and offer our support.

“For some people, online is better for them, because if they’re struggling with life, they don’t want to go outside and see people. Attending mental health workshops or speaking with Samaritans, doctors or using any of the other mental health services on offer can be a challenge.

“They prefer to do it by the comfort of their keyboard because it is less direct.”

Time to Talk offers events, regular clubs and a library of resources as part of their services.

Graham said: “We also run events during the week to help distract people who feel stuck at home or just need something to occupy them because if you’re stuck in your head all the time you’ll feel crazy.

“For examples on the types of events, we do quizzes, discussions about cooking, gardening or music and we’ve just started doing face-to-face events for people who feel comfortable enough to take part.

“We also do basic peer support, we have a whole library of advice with stuff from major charities like Mind and Samaritans.”

Time to Talk have also spoken out on how the 'new normal' way of life, with restrictions and constant updates on the crisis and new guidelines; being a large cause for the sharp increase.

Graham also reminded those battling mental health problems that having someone to talk to is important. He added: “Normal life... we can’t do that anymore.

“If you’re going to the shops you’ve got to make sure you have your facemask, hand sanitiser, check you’re going at a time that there won’t be any queues if they’re a thing that make you anxious.

“Normal life is so stressful now, that people can’t cope.

“Taking the first step to seeking advice or getting help is really hard, that’s one of the reasons the charity being online based and having our confidential online service works really well.

“With it being remote, you could be using a different name or picture when talking to us but at the end of the day, you’re still getting to talk to someone about your problems which is important.

“Having someone to talk to is important.”


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"Time to Talk Mental Health UK offers free peer support to any UK adult needing help. See www.TimeToTalkUK.org.uk " graham carrington, uk around 9 months, 2 weeks ago