Mental Health and Wellbeing
Mental wellbeing describes how we are feeling and how well we can cope with day-to-day life. It can change from moment to moment, day to day, month to month or year to year.
What affects someone's mental wellbeing won't necessarily affect others in the same way. But we all have times when we have low mental wellbeing, where we feel stressed, upset or find it difficult to cope. If we experience low mental wellbeing over a long period of time, we are more likely to develop a mental health problem.
Managing your wellbeing is an important skill to develop. The University promotes the 10 Ways of Wellbeing which are steps we can all take to improve our wellbeing and maintain our life balance.
Mental health problems affect around one in four people. They range from common problems, such as depression and anxiety, to rarer problems such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Living with a mental health problem can often have an impact on day to day life, making things that others might not think about a bit more difficult.
We believe that all students and staff at the university should be able to talk freely about their mental health. Much like physical health, we all have it and need to look after it to stay fit and well. Finding out more about the types of mental health problems can be helpful in making us feel more confident to talk to others.
What support is available?
If you are feeling distressed and need immediate help:
● Contact your doctor's surgery and request an emergency appointment. If your surgery is not open, contact the NHS Out of Hours Service on 111 available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobiles.
● Call the Samaritans on 116 123 available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Calls are free from landlines and mobiles.
● NHS Choices provides a list of services that can help if you're feeling suicidal.
● Grassroots Offers a free Stay Alive app which offers help and support both to people with thoughts of suicide and to people concerned about someone else.
● If you feel at immediate risk of harm to yourself, go straight to your nearest hospital Accident and Emergency department or call Emergency Services on 999.
● Staying Safe offers free resources for anyone distressed, thinking about suicide or worried about someone they care about. It provides Safety Plan guidance tools, with easy to print/online templates and guidance video tutorials designed to help people through the process of writing their own Safety Plan.
● The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is a charity dedicated to preventing male suicide. You can call their free and anonymous helpline 0800 58 58 58 or use their web chat, 5pm-12am every day.
● HOPELineUK provides a confidential support and advice service for anyone under the age of 35 who might be having thoughts of suicide. You can call 0800 068 41 41, text 07786209697 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Opening hours are 10am-10pm weekdays, 2pm-10pm weekends, and 2pm-5pm Bank Holidays.
Two local services that offer support for those affected by suicide are Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS) and The Red Lipstick Foundation. There is also a national service Support After Suicide.
Support for Students
● The University offers a range of health and wellbeing support through the Student Wellbeing Service. details of the services available and to book an appointment can be found here
● What'sUp? mobile app free of charge to chat to staff from the Student Wellbeing Service during office hours. Any messages sent out of hours will be replied to the next working day. As one of our students, you can download the WhatsUp? app from your phone's app store and use your University of Portsmouth student ID to log in instantly. Once your ID is validated, you can use the app anonymously.
You can also use the app:
● To rate your mood
● As a personal journal
● For inspirational notifications
● To raise a concern for someone else
● To ask a question
● To find wellbeing contacts
Support for Staff
● Talk to your line manager/supervisor
● The University offers a range of health and wellbeing support through Occupational Health.
● Talk to the University Chaplaincy Service
Other Sources of Support
● Report and Support for advice and reporting options for staff and students who have experienced bullying, assault, discrimination or harassment. You can also report witnessing these things happening to others.
● Mind is a national charity with local centres which provides information, support and guidance for anyone experiencing a mental health problem, or anyone who is supporting someone with a mental health problem. They also have a comprehensive list of specialist organisations and resources.
● Mind Out is a national mental health service run by and for the LGBTQ+ community