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PHE launches new mental health campaign as nation struggles with anxiety and stress

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A new campaign has been launched across the country in response to a study suggesting that half of adults are struggling with their mental health.

Launched by Public Health England (PHE), the “Every Mind Matters” campaign aims to support people to “take action” to look after their mental wellbeing.

According to PHE, the campaign will encourage Brits to seek free help by using the NHS-approved Mind Plan from the Every Mind Matters website. After answering five “simple questions”, a free, personalised mental wellbeing plan will be generated, complete with tips to help boost mood and reduce stress and anxiety.

The initiative comes after a new survey found that nearly half (49 per cent) of UK adults felt that the coronavirus pandemic has “impacted negatively” on their mental health and wellbeing. These feelings were reported by more women (53 per cent) than men (45 per cent).

A further 46 per cent of the nation said they had been experiencing “more anxiety”, while 44 per cent reported more stress, 34 per cent reported sleeping difficulties, and 46 per cent reported “low mood”.

When asked why their wellbeing had fallen over the year, more than half (56 per cent) reported missing friends and family, a third (33 per cent) cited “loneliness”, 53 per cent reported financial or employment uncertainty, and the same proportion (53 per cent) reported family health worries.

Commenting on the launch of the campaign, Clare Perkins, Director of the Mental Health Programme at PHE, said: “While the experience of the pandemic has been different for everyone, there’s no doubt it has caused unprecedented challenges, and, not surprisingly, many of us are now experiencing poorer mental wellbeing.

“Stress, anxiety and worry are very natural feelings in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak, and looking after our mental wellbeing has never been more important. The good news is that our Every Mind Matters COVID-19 resources have lots of excellent practical tips and advice, and I’d encourage you to get a free NHS Mind Plan, which will give you simple steps to help you navigate these challenging times.”

The latest figures suggest that around one in four people in the UK experience a mental health problem each year, with the most common illnesses being anxiety and depression.