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Castle Surgery’s Wellbeing Resources

Hello! Thank you for clicking on our wellbeing page.

In this area, we’ve listed a few resources that you might find useful for improving your wellbeing and mental health. Self-care can improve our lives in different ways.

This includes developing new helpful behaviours that produce positive outcomes as well as strategies to help tackle challenging situations. Just as certain activities can help our physical health, there are things we can do to help our mental health.

It’s good to think about how closely the two are linked and how each can affect the other, as such there might be activities such as exercise that people find makes them physically fitter but feel better in themselves too.

There isn’t a definitive recipe in what you need to follow. Different things work for different people so you can see what works best for you.

Different types of resources include:

  • online websites – to access on your computer or smartphone
  • apps – to access on your smartphone
  • books – either physical paper books or digital copies
  • phone – speak to someone over the phone
  • face to face – this might be a bit limited given the current times.
  • SLEEP – sleep affects our wellbeing a lot. Read our section on things you can do to help with your sleep.
  • Children and Young Adults Leaflet – Young developing minds need support too. Take a look at the resources on this leaflet that you can download.
  • Platfform FYP, children 13-16 Swansea Bay – 4YP Swansea Bay works with 13-16 year olds in Swansea, Neath and Port Talbot. The project offers one-to-one support, peer support groups and the State of Mind Programme.

Online Web Resources

Wellbeingthroughwork.org.uk

  • If you’re in employment (even if you’re off sick) you can contact this team to get different types of support

lltf.com– Living Life to the Full

  • Free online courses covering low mood, stress and resiliency.
  • Work out why you feel as you do, how to tackle problems, build confidence, get going again, feel happier, stay calm, tackle upsetting thinking and more.

mind.org.uk

  • provides advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem.

moodgym.com.au/

  • moodgym is like an interactive self-help book which helps you to learn and practise skills which can help to prevent and manage symptoms of depression and anxiety.

bemindfulonline.com/ – Be Mindful Online

  • Be Mindful is the only digital Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) course.
  • NHS-approved Pathway has helped thousands of people to reduce their levels of stress, anxiety and depression and improve their mental wellbeing.

silvercloudhealth.com/uk

  • online course to help you manage stress, anxiety and depression.
  • You work through a series of topics selected by a therapist to address specific needs. The eight-week course is designed to be completed in your own time and at your own pace.

NHS – WellBeing Whilst staying at home

  • Tips for things to do whilst in isolation

my.livewellwithpain.co.uk Live Well with Pain

  • Are you living with long term pain? Developed by clinicians for both clinicans and those living with pain, this is a really useful resource to help you live well despite the pain.

SLEEP. . .

We’ve all experienced a bad night’s sleep. Some have it more frequently than others.

Poor sleep affects you during the day as you may feel more tired, less alert and long term could impact on your physical health too. Before jumping onto medications to help with sleep (which all come with their own risks) it’s worth seeing if you have tried some simple measures first.

SLEEP HYGEINE

This is just a term that describes simple practices and habits that together could help improve your night’s sleep. This includes simple actions like:

Try not having a TV in your room and keeping your bedroom as a bedroom to allow your mind to associate this room as a place of rest and feel relaxed when you’re going to bed.

Some people like to read in bed. Many people love gandering at their smartphones in bed. That activity might actually keep you up, in addition to studies showing the effects on blue light emission from displays may also affect your sleep patterns. Try to wind away from these activities a couple of hours before you go to bed.

Avoid those caffeinated drinks late afternoon and early evening!

Avoid taking naps during the day. You might have caught only a few hours during the night, making you tired during the day so you nap. But then that’ll make your sleep pattern even more erratic.

Light sleepers:

  • Do your pets roam around your house at night? A few of our furry friends are nocturnal and love the nightlife, sometimes to the point of making noise that disturbs us. Is there a way to move them to another room
  • Headphones/ear plugs may be an option to avoid random noises that might wake you up

DEVICES FOR SLEEP

White Noise

  • sometimes some people find white noise calming. Playing some sort of background sound might be useful, it could be nature sounds, sound of rain, some people even use audio books.
  • Again, different things work for different people so you can try to see what works.
  • You can play this directly from your phone or if you have a smart device like an Alexa or Google Home, you can play from there.

Light therapy :

  • Mainly for during winter months where we have shorter days and longer nights.
  • This affects some people, perhaps as the circadian rhythm (your biological or body clock) is affected. Some studies show that our bodies may naturally prefer to wake up to the gradual light from sunrise, and thus wakes us up during the lighter phases of sleep where we may feel fresher, rather than an alarm that course force us to wake during episodes of deeper sleeps where you might even feel a bit disortiented.
  • You can either get devices that are timed to gradually increase brightness in your room in the morning to wake you up gently
    o If you’re a bit more techy and have smart bulbs, you can programme these to gradually increase in brightness each morning, say, with an Alexa app.

Aroma therapy and diffusers:

  • Some people find certain scents calming. Clean crisp cotton sheets? Warm magnolia? A gentle jasmine or a soothing lavender?
  • Although there are studies that have shown aromatherapy can help with anxiety/stress/sleep this must also come with a warning.
  • Please check Allergens list and any manufacturer warnings on the oils/scents devices you decide to try. Do not ingest it.

Here are a collection of links from reputable resources regarding the topic of sleep hygiene:

Are there symptoms or something in particular that’s affecting your sleep?

Sometimes it might be certain symptoms, like having to wake up at night more often to pee that disrupts your sleep. Sometimes pain might be waking you up. It might be restless legs. It could be breathlessness that might wake you up. Some medicines might also affect sleep (please check your medicine’s leaflet side effects information).

If you’re finding that there’s something specific that keeps waking you up, give the surgery a call and we can go through looking into what we can do together to manage those symptoms.

Apps: Wellbeing and Mental Health Phone/Tablet Applications

A mixture of free and paid resources. Some of the websites above have their own apps too.

Most of these should be accessible both on Android and iOS (Apple iPhone) devices.

NHS has their own library list of apps you might find useful here.

Please look for these apps in your Google Play Store or Apple App Store, depending on your device.

  •  bemindfulonline
  • Headspace
  • Moodgym
  •  Sleep
  • Calms App
  • Music – Max Richter
  •  Via Spotify – Sleep Music Playlists/Nature Sounds

Other:

  • CalmHarm

Calm Harm is an app designed to help people resist or manage the urge to self-harm. It’s private and password protected.

BOOKS

Your ContBooks. Whether you like flipping through paper pages, swiping through digital text or listening over audio books. There are various ways to access several useful self-help books.

The Chimp Paradox – Prof Steve Peters

  • Highly recommended book. Discusses a concept of how our mind reacts to things in life in a simplistic analogy of primal instinctive chimp, logical human and storage computer. It looks at how these experiences forms habits and how to then change the way we react in future to a more controlled and positive way
  • Feel the Fear and Do it anyway – Susan Jeffers
  • Mindfulness – finding Peace in a frantic world
  • The 4 Pillar Plan – Mark Williams, Danny pENMAN
  • Becoming – by Michelle Obama
  • How Full Is Your Bucket – Don Cliffton
  • Gratitude Journalent Goes Here

Phone

 

  • Wellbeing Through Work
  • Samaritans
  • Cruse Bereavement
  • Community Advice and listening line.org.uk

Face to Face

NERS exercises

  • Exercise programme with an instructor

Social Prescribing

  • Specialists in social prescribing listen to you and determine other people or other resources that would be really beneficial in your specific scenario and “prescribe” you these social actions.

Mind

  • Can self-refer for counselling

Wellbeingthroughwork

  • Can self-refer and they can often arrange counselling

HR/Occupational Health

  • Some people’s work places may have their own wellbeing resources so please enquire with them in case this might be an option for you

Counselling

Classes

  • Dance Classes

  • O.V.E. workshop – literacy skills, IT skills, crafts, community garden

Exercise

Isolation – Keeping In Touch

If you can’t your loved ones (friends/families) in person due to social distancing guidance, if you’re able to, try to keep in touch by phone or video. There are several video platforms to try. Just bear in mind any data charges these may incur if you haven’t got unlimited data or a data plan.

  • Whatsapp video
  • Facebook Video
  •  Facetime (Apple only)
  • Zoom
  • Skype video/ Microsoft Teams
  •  Some people have smart devices in their homes, like Alexa Show – these have options for calling other users. 
  • Google Duo
  •  WeChat

Talk to someone you trust

Let family or friends know what’s going on for you. They may be able to offer support and help keep you safe.

There’s no right or wrong way to talk about suicidal feelings – starting the conversation is what’s important.

Who else you can talk to?

If you find it difficult to talk to someone you know, you could:

call a GP – ask for an emergency appointment

call 111 out of hours – they will help you find the support and help you need

contact your mental health crisis team – if you have one

Tips for coping right now

  • try not to think about the future – just focus on getting through today
  • stay away from drugs and alcohol
  • get yourself to a safe place
  • do something you usually enjoy, such as spending time with a pet

Worried about someone else?

If you’re worried about someone, try to get them to talk to you. Ask open-ended questions like: “How do you feel about…?”

Do not worry about having the answers. Just listening to what someone has to say and taking it seriously can be more helpful.

See Samaritans’ tips on how to start a difficult conversation.

Rethink also has advice on how to support someone who is having suicidal thoughts

IMPORTANT!

Is your life in danger? 

Could your safety be at risk?

Please seek urgent medical attention in the event of experiencing suicidal intent. There are health professionals available to assess in emergencies.

If you have seriously harmed yourself – for example, by taking a drug overdose – call 999 for an ambulance or go straight to A&E.

Or ask someone else to call 999 or take you to A&E