Today, (Saturday, 10th October 2020) on World Mental Health Day, Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People Mary Butler TD, and the HSE, are calling on people to be more aware of their own mental health and reminding everyone of the small things we can all do to take care of it.

Speaking about the need to care for ourselves as well as each other Minister Butler said “The theme of this year’s World Mental Health Day is Mental Health for All and I am committed in my role as Minister for Mental Health and Older People to improving the mental health outcomes of all people living in Ireland. This will be achieved through enhanced access across a continuum of mental health services and supports, from mental health prevention, promotion and early intervention to specialist mental health services where required. In the next few weeks I will establish a committee with responsibility for overseeing the implementation and monitoring of Ireland’s new national mental health policy Sharing the Vision. This policy will be integral to developing Ireland’s mental health system and ensuring that people get the mental health supports that they need, when they need them.”

National Director, HSE Community Operations, Yvonne O’Neil added “When there is a lot going on it’s easy to forget to take time for ourselves. This year, as we continue to learn to live with Covid-19, we want to remind everyone that things like eating well, taking time out, and managing our news intake can all have a positive impact on our mental health.  And while not everyone will need mental health support, for those that do there are also variety of services provided through the HSE and our funded partners that can be found on YourMentalHealth.ie.”

Seeking help at the right time is so important. Accessing an online or phone support can be a first step towards support from a health service for anyone who is experiencing more serious mental health difficulties. The availability of more online and phone supports makes it easier for people to get the right support at the right time, and the earlier we can reach out for support the better.

The Psychosocial Response Project, currently underway within the HSE, has been working to highlight the different levels of support including online, phone and text as well as face to face that are available for the general public and for health sector staff. Traffic to YourMentalHealth.ie has increased by almost 100%* since this time last year and almost 75% (73.6) has been from mobile which shows people are accessing the information whenever and wherever works best for them.

It is important that people know what services are available to them. We encourage anyone who is concerned about their own mental health or the mental health of someone they care about to visit YourMentalHealth.ie or to call the YourMentalHealth Information Line on 1800 111 888 any time day or night. We would also remind people who might be worried that they can talk to their GP.

The HSE have also a short survey – just eight questions – which can be accessed via the link below:

https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/s3fmxd