Summary of report contentA research study focused on service users’ experiences with low mood and/or stress: how they take care of their mental health and how primary care mental health services support them in that. ‘Self-care’ refers to the range of actions that people think of and take in order to take care of their own mental health and lives. 3 deliberation-orientated focus groups held in different locations in Essex during January 2017 with 12 participants with a diagnosis of anxiety and/or depression. Findings: views of self-care and the activities that constitute self-care in mental health are not static; they change and readjust depending on the evolving condition of the person and changes in functioning. Recommendations for GPs interacting with people experiencing anxiety and/or depression: • Do not just look for symptoms: explore your patient’s understanding of self-care. • Use your skills of empathy, active listening and a non-judgemental stance towards them. • Avoid making any assumptions. • Work with the patient and not on the patient; create partnerships and share decision-making. • Be familiar with the mental health care services offered in your locality; establish systems that will enable you to get updates about the range and availability of such services.
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The lived experience of self-help in mental health in Essex, Essex
Date of publication
Monday, 1 May, 2017
Date evidence capture began
Friday, 9 September, 2016
Date evidence capture finished
Sunday, 1 January, 2017
Type of report
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Waiting times and lists for treatment
Other information of note about this report
Healthwatch reference number
Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation?
What type of organisation requested the work
If this work has been done in partnership, who is the partner?
University of Essex
Primary research method used
How was the information collected?
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced?
Primary care services
Secondary care services
Counselling/improving access to psychological therapies (IAPT)
Psychiatry/mental health (hospital services)
Accident & emergency
Mental health services
Community mental health team (CMHT)
Depression and anxiety service
Community based services for people with mental health needs
Urgent and emergency care services
Accident & emergency
Types of disabilities
Types of long term conditions
Another long-term condition
Mental health condition
Number of people who shared their views
Does the information include public's views?
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views?
Does the information include staff's views?
Does the information include other people's views?
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views?
Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report?
Does the information contain a response from a provider?
Is there evidence of impact in the report?
Is there evidence of impact external to the report?