Managing your mental health – from lockdown to the easing of restrictions

Even positive change can lead to anxiety, and it can take time to readjust to things we have not done for a while.
Girl wearing a red jumper walking down a leafy lane with arms outstretched

For many,  the recent easing of lockdown has provided opportunities to return to the things  that they know and love.  However, the pace of change and concern over whether restrictions should be eased yet, may also be causing some people worry, fear or anxiety.

This may especially apply to those more vulnerable to the virus and those of us with mental health concerns.

There are lots of things that can help you to manage these feelings and make it easier to adjust. That's why it's so important to do what we can to look after our mental health and wellbeing – now more than ever – and to reach out if you need support.

Where can I go for help? 

Alternatively, if you or someone you know needs urgent of emergency support you can:

  • Call 999 for emergency intervention
  • Call Freephone 0800 6444 101 or NHS 111 and select option 2 for mental health services
  • Use the Single Point of Access (SPA) 24/7 Mental Health Helpline provided by Herts Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (HPFT) if you want to chat, need help or guidance and it’s not an emergency

Herts residents of all ages, including service users, carers, GPs and other professionals can contact the 24/7 Single Point of Access (SPA) Mental Health Helpline team at any hour of the day or night, 365 days a year. The team can provide advice and support  who are experiencing a mental health crisis, need some mental health support or just want to talk on.

What people told us

Our research found that for most people, Covid-19 had negatively affected their mental wellbeing. Mental health declined for people who were already getting support from mental health services but also people who had never used these services before. However, only a small number accessed support for their mental health. This was largely because they were unaware of what services were available and how to access them.

Out of all three of our Covid-19 surveys last year the Mental Health Survey received the most responses mainly from people who were shielding. Feelings experienced by respondents ranged from anxiety and depression, isolation and loneliness and lack of motivation.

When respondents mentioned trying to contact the Mental Health Trust for support they noted difficulty getting through and frustration in trying to access the Out of Hours Service and Single Point of Access.

The findings and recommendations were welcomed by the Trust and an action plan to address the issues and assist them in rebuilding improved services for the future was agreed.

Actions included a review of the 24/7 helpline for the Out of Hours Service and Single Point Access to provide an improved response for service users and better guidance on accessing services particularly for crisis support.

You can find out more and read the reports here.

Share your experiences

Tell us about your experiences

Take just 5 minutes to tell us about your experience of health and/or social care services to help the NHS know what worked, and what could be improved.

Share your experiences