Experiencing Mental Health Issues? Your GP can help

Mental health is just as important as our physical health. Mental health includes emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.

Mental health is about the way we think, feel, and develop relationships. Our mental health and wellbeing can be influenced by a variety of factors including:

  • Sleeping – sleep helps you to repair and restore your bodies and mind.
  • Nutrition – nutrition plays an important role in maintaining your mental health and wellbeing.
  • Keeping active – being physically active can improve your mood and reduce stress.
  • Relationships – spending time with people close to you can help improve your mental health.
  • Work – work can make you feel good about yourself and can give you a sense of purpose.
  • Life events – everyone experiences ups and downs throughout life which can affect your mental health and wellbeing.
  • Alcohol and other drug use.
  • Grief and loss.

We all have ups and downs, times when we feel great, and times when we feel we are struggling. This is normal. Keeping our mind healthy is something we should do on a daily basis. It is an important part of your overall health to be able to function well, have meaningful social connections, positive self-esteem, and the ability to cope with change.

If you or someone you are living with is experiencing one or more fo the following feelings or behaviours it can be an early warning sign of a problem:

  • Feeling anxious or worried for no reason and for more than two weeks.
  • Feeling down or unhappy for no reason and for more than two weeks.
  • Eating or sleeping too much or too little.
  • Loss of energy and motivation.
  • Pulling away from people and usual activities.
  • Feeling numb or like nothing matters.
  • Heaving unexplained aches and pains.
  • Feeling helpless or hopeless.
  • Smoking, drinking or using drugs more than usual.
  • Feeling unusually confused, forgetful, on edge, angry, upset, worried, or scared.
  • Yelling or fighting with family and friends.
  • Experiencing severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships.
  • Having persistent thoughts and memories you can’t get out of your head.
  • Hearing voices or believing things that are not true.
  • Thinking of harming yourself or others.
  • Inability to perform daily tasks like taking care of your kids or getting to work or school.

Getting help early can make a difference.

Talk to your GP today to discuss:

  • How you’ve been feeling lately.
  • How long your symptoms have been present.
  • What your GP might think the best options are for you.
  • What your concerns might be.
  • How this may be impacting on your life.
  • How to set up a Mental Health Treatment Plan.

There are many free and low-cost services available for people who have financial difficulties (e.g. unemployed or have a healthcare/concession card). These services can be accessed via your GP.

By talking with you about what is happening and working with you, your GP can determine what support is best for you, including:

  • Access to self-help resources, support groups, online support, and referrals to community services.
  • Setting up a Mental Health Care Plan which can allow you to claim a Medicare rebate for up to six visits to a clinical psychologist, mental health, or allied health professional.
  • Depending on your needs, your GP can also refer you for an additional four sessions.

To book a mental health appointment please download our FREE App or call 08 9456 0184.