NHS aims to get Barking and Dagenham talking about mental health

Specialist and patient at a Talking therapy meeting

Specialist and patient at a Talking therapy meeting - Credit: Archant

The NHS is promoting ‘Talking Therapies’ sessions in Barking and Dagenham for people struggling with issues like stress as part of its Mental Health Awareness Week.

The campaign wants people to make use of the free confidential NHS service which offers one to one appointments with specialists and personalised treatment for each patient.

Christine Brand, from Dagenham, started attending Talking Therapy sessions when she was overwhelmed with stress due to her studies and a lack of sleep.

“Like lots of people I had a lot going on at once and all of these things together meant I couldn’t cope. I needed to get help,” she said.

“I was in constant tears from the stress, it was just too much to cope with and I was going downhill fast.”

Mrs Brand, 55, sought the help of Talking Therapies and says the sessions helped her cope with her problems thanks to the structure of the treatment.

“It’s quite a natural process, it flows from a conversation and the specialist took me through my thoughts and feelings and made them clearer,” she explained.

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“They helped me see things from a new angle and I could move forward with my situation.”

Dr Kumar, local GP and mental health lead for Barking and Dagenham Clinical Commissioning Group, (CCG), says that talking therapies is the first port of call for all GPs whose patients are struggling to cope mentally.

“When I see patients who tell me they are feeling stressed or down, are worrying too much about something, or they are having trouble sleeping, I recommend Talking Therapies as the best treatment to help them feel better,” he said.

“Talking Therapies is a nationally recommended treatment programme and it works. It’s a service that GPs support, and the CCG and I have given it our stamp of approval.”

For more information on Talking Therapies visit mytalkingtherapies.org.uk or call 0300 300 1554.