Did you know that approximately 1 in 3 people with a long term physical condition also struggle with their mental health? It is no wonder that this statistic is so significant. People with rare disease and chronic illness face constant uncertainty, apprehension about tests and results and so much more.
Anxiety is one of the most common mental health illnesses and it is on a spectrum. For some people, coping mechanisms can help them manage day-to-day whereas for others, medication and therapeutic treatment helps them to cope with the smallest of tasks.
When managing illness, there is so much anxiety whether that is meeting new doctors and putting your trust in to them, waiting for test results and fear about how to learn your limits.
On the other hand, more awareness around anxiety and mental health illnesses is vital because physical health and mental health are so interlinked.
Although physical health can cause mental ill-health, it can also be the other way around. For example, anxiety can cause heart palpitations, nausea and hot flushes therefore, recognising that you may be struggling is important in order to help both your physical and emotional wellbeing.
There are different ways that you can get support for your mental health, here are some suggestions:
Speak to someone you trust, maybe a friend or family member
Contact a charity for example MIND or the Samaritans
Speak to your GP who can recommend other types of support
As well as getting support, here are things you could do to help yourself:
Get outside for some fresh air
Write down your thoughts, can often help you reflect with whatever you are struggling with
Tick something off your to-do list, it will feel like an accomplishment!
Have a shower or a bath to help you relax
Anxiety and mental ill-health in general is tough so please don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed to get help. You deserve support and there are people to support you.
If you do feel like you are a risk to yourself or others, contact 111 or 999.
More information on mental health and how to get help can be found on these websites:
Written for RARE Youth Revolution by team member Katy Baker.
If you would like to submit your voice to the RARE Youth Revolution, please email our youth coordinator, James Brooks: firstname.lastname@example.org