Health and Wellbeing
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Stay Connected, Stay Safe
Now more than ever it is so important to be absolutely on top of both our physical and our mental health. The better we are taking care of our physical health, the stronger our immune system will be to protect us from the virus, and these strange times, with lack of contact with our loved ones, a huge change in routine and uncertainty about the future, inevitably are going to have an effect on our mental health.
It’s important to check in regularly with your loved ones who are more vulnerable and need extra support. Ask if your friends and family, and those elder, shielding alone or struggling with their mental health how they are doing, and if there’s anything you can do to help.
Lockdown doesn’t mean the end of socialising, it just means that we need to adjust to new ways of interacting. Technology has been an undeniable advantage throughout the virus and will continue to support us in keeping the virus at bay whilst helping us to interact with friends, family and loved ones. Stay connected using FaceTime, and apps like Zoom, where you can call multiple friends and family members at once, where ever they are in theworld.
If the first lockdown effected you badly and coming into the second one has been daunting, talk to a friend or family member letting them know you would like a little extra support, speak to your GP about any help you may be able to get, and if things get really bad do not hesitate to reach out to a crisis team like Samaritans or CALM. If you live alone, take advantage of the support bubble you are allowed to have – visiting one other household, and above all do not suffer in silence – you are far from alone.
Lockdown is likely to put a strain on couples and families too, remember your self care and time alone is as important as time shared together. The best way to combat issues is to sit down and talk them through openly and honestly. Ask each other how you are feeling regularly and make sure you are working as best as you can so everyone’s needs are being met fairly. Visit our families page for more info.
Remember – IT’S GOOD TO TALK!
Interview with a Wellness guru, Wim Hof and This Morning (ITV)
Tips For Good Physical and Mental Health
Get plenty of sleep – a good nights sleep supports a healthy immune system, plus helps you feel more relaxed and have a clearer head when you are feeling anxious.
Eat well – vitamin C rich foods like oranges, kiwi and broccoli amongst many others are brilliant for supporting your immune system, as is a healthy and balanced diet in general. Although comfort eating is tempting when you are struggling with your mental health, there are healthy foods and supplements you can take that are scientifically proven to boost your mood for longer than briefly feeling satisfied after binging on junk. Omega-3 rich foods, leafy greens, and lots of fruits, vegetables, beans and lentils are brain foods and study’s show they can help to improve your mood and overall mental wellbeing.
Hydrate – drinking plenty of water again supports your over all health, boosting your immune system. Being dehydrated can make you feel really unwell, lethargic, people even commonly mistake the feeling of being thirsty for being hungry. Another side effect of dehydration is brain fog, and some study’s suggest feeling anxious can be caused or exasperated by dehydration, so it’s equally as important for your mental health. Avoiding alcohol in excess is also advised, as it’s detrimental for both physical and mental health.
Exercise – getting your blood pumping with a work out, a run, a walk, yoga, Pilates or even dancing should be something we are all doing daily in lockdown. As well as the benefits for your heart, lungs, joints, and body in general, it gets you back in touch with your body and focuses your mind. Lots of gyms are running free classes on their instagram pages throughout lockdown, MOB group has a subscription for live exercise classes, and check out any of your own yoga and Pilates instructors or PTs personal instagrams as they may be doing something and needing your support.
Journaling – those struggling with their mental health, especially those who find it harder to talk may find writing their thoughts and feelings down on to paper helpful. Firstly this can help to organise your thoughts better and make sense of them, but it also acts as a good release – almost as if getting them out of your body and into the world. A good way to start off your day on a positive note is taking a pen and paper first thing in the morning with your coffee and writing down everything in your life you are grateful for – people, items, your health etc. Even when you are feeling down and out you will be surprised about how much you can come up with and it starts your day off on a good note, focusing on what you do have instead of what you don’t.
Meditation – this is a great technique for calming your mind, and returning your thoughts and focus to the present moment. It’s proved extremely effective for many people struggling with mental health, or looking to improve their general wellbeing and understanding of themselves. For beginners, apps like headspace provide guidance on how to begin your journey with meditation, and you can also find free guided meditations on YouTube.
Self Care – taking some time out for yourself like a bath, making a nice meal, resting, or doing a facemask are important and can be very relaxing, especially if you are feeling anxious, overworking yourself or living in a busy household.
Child services experience high call levels.
Childline has been inundated with calls due to many children feeling vulnerable from a lack of routine, being separated from friends and forced to spend long periods of time with their family. It’s been a challenging 4 months for the adult population, but it’s easy to dismiss the feelings of children in the misconception that they will do as they are told. As a parent, it is important to provide the support and help they may need in order to navigate these difficult times. If you are unsure of how to tackle this, use the links below for further advice.
It has been difficult to cope as a key worker in these unprecedented times and for many the journey hasn’t stopped and the repercussions from the aftermath are taking their toll. The clapping has stopped, which gave many a lift each week and showed that the nation cared and was thinking of them. But as people return to a ‘new normal’, the effects on the NHS staff still persist. We are still thinking of you and are eternally grateful for putting your life before others.
The Prince of Wales sends a message of thanks marking 72 years of the NHS
NHS Discounts and Services What have you done to help! Here are some of the incredible achievements carried out during the pandemic to help raise money for our amazing NHS: