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Scroll further down this page for more information on NHS 111 and NHS 111 online, extended access to primary care appointments, GP services online, pharmacies, urgent treatment centres (UTC) and primary care centre, hospitals, dentist information and social care and support guide.
During the national lockdown which was in place in the first half of this year to ‘flatten the curve’ and stop the spread of COVID-19, many people struggled with its impact on their mental health. As we head into a second national lockdown, you might be worried about how you and those you love will cope.
But there are simple and effective ways to help yourself – and others – to feel better. As we begin a second national ‘lockdown’, we are sharing the top ten things we can all do to look after our mental wellbeing during these difficult times:
Looking after yourself
- Be kind to yourself. At the start of May this year, Mental Health Awareness Week focussed on the theme of ‘kindness’, and we shared a list of simple ways to be kind to yourself during the COVID-19 pandemic. Lots of us struggle to treat ourselves kindly. In fact, we’re often nicer to others than we are to ourselves. Show yourself compassion when things aren’t going well, try to put less stress and pressure on yourself, and take a few minutes to focus on your good qualities.
2. Get outside. We know it’s much harder as the days get shorter and colder, but there’s a wealth of evidence that being in daylight and visiting any green, leafy spaces near you can really boost your mood. So wrap up warm, and try and get outside in your local area. Enjoy the crisp autumnal leaves or watch the sunset.
3. Get moving any way you can. This year, although gyms and leisure centres have closed, so many people took up cycling, regular walks around their neighbourhood, and of course at-home workouts (maybe you joined in with PE with Joe Wicks?). Moving more is good for your mind and body. Find an activity that you enjoy, and make it part of your daily routine. Our A Weight Off Your Mind webpages have lots of resources to help you find a physical activity that’s right for you.
- Get a good night’s sleep. In May, research showed that more than four in 10 adults have been experiencing trouble sleeping during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you’re struggling to sleep due to worry or stress, that’s understandable – take a look at our Sleeping Problems self help guide to find techniques that might help. Our relaxation tracks can help you to let go and drift off. Public Health England’s Every Mind Matters website also includes NHS-approved expert tips and advice on improving your sleep.
- Look out for burnout. Many of us are working harder than ever. If you’re working from home, it can be hard to switch off from work, and you don’t have colleagues around to stop and have a break with. If you still have to go into work, or are returning to work, this can be filled with anxieties too. The Mental Health Foundation have a useful webpage with advice on looking after your mental health while working during coronavirus which covers these topics and more.
- Focus on hobbies that you enjoy, or learn something new that you can enjoy during the restrictions. As we approach the festive season, why not make some handmade cards or presents for people? It’s a great way to show them how much you care even if you can’t be together, and can be a fun family activity. Whatever you choose, learning new things can give your mental health a boost with a sense of achievement.
Looking out for others
- Be kind to others. The first national lockdown saw a flurry of kind community spirit – people left notes offering help to their neighbours, and drew rainbows to display in their windows, providing hope and joy through the difficult times. Get involved any way you can, however small. Simply checking on a friend can make a huge difference to their day. It will boost their mood, and yours too.
- Where restrictions allow, visit loved ones who need you. If your loved one is currently being cared for in one of CNTW’s wards or units, you can still visit them during this lockdown – so long as you take the right precautions. We know how vital these visits are to people’s wellbeing. (Please contact the relevant ward team to discuss visiting procedures with them ahead of time.) You can also still visit people in your support bubble at the moment. (Read about who can be in a support bubble and how it works.)
Getting help early
- Find out where to seek help if you or someone you know is struggling. If you need urgent help with your mental health, our Freephone crisis phone numbers are available 24/7. The North East and North Cumbria Suicide Prevention Network also has a directory of services, helplines and resources that might be useful to you.
- Remember that the NHS is still here for you. All of our specialist services are still taking referrals and supporting people. If you have a healthcare appointment, please keep it. Some things may look and feel different, but we are doing our best to support you safely, and if you’re worried about something you can still seek help. You shouldn’t put off seeing a doctor about a physical health condition, and the same goes for your mental health: the earlier you seek help, the better.
For more advice on looking after your mental health during lockdown, check out this simple guide to looking after yourself and others produced earlier this year by the North East and North Cumbria Suicide Prevention Network.
Learning Disability and Autism
Across north Cumbria there is lots of work being done to support people with learning disabilities and autism.
Continuing Healthcare (CHC)
Some people with long-term complex health needs qualify for free social care arranged and funded solely by the NHS. This is known as NHS continuing healthcare.
If you need to see a specialist, you have the right to choose which service you're referred to by your GP.
Service Information Leaflets
Selection of information relating to Individual Funding Requests (IFRs), NHS Continuing Healthcare, NHS-funded Nursing Care, Summary Care Records, and Help with Health Costs
Advice and Guidance for Children
Including an NHS guide for children aged 0-5, Health Builder Pathways and more...
Extended access primary care appointments are for routine appointments at times when people who may struggle to get to see their GP or practice nurse in traditional working hours can access routine care.
This will be provided in two ways:
- All appointments at weekends and bank holidays will be provided through Cumbria Health On Call (CHOC).
- Weekday appointments will be provided by groups of GP practices working together on an ICC Footprint (except the Eden and Carlisle networks which will be provided by CHoC).
Both weekend and weekday appointments are booked in the usual way, via the patients’ own practice. It means patients will be unlikely to see their own GP and they may have to attend another site.
Patients will be offered the appointments when they contact their own practices. It will be explained why the doctor or practice nurse might not be their own and why they may have to travel to a different location. For these booked and planned appointments the extended access primary care team will have access to the patients notes.
This does not change how people seek and access healthcare if they have an urgent need.
This represented a substantial new investment of £960k in 2018/19 (rising to £1.724m in 2019/20) and an additional 187 hours per week in our primary care service and our GP and primary care teams were involved in helping us design this model.
The team of health professionals at your local pharmacy can offer help and clinical advice to manage minor health concerns and if your symptoms suggest it’s more serious, they’ll ensure you get the care you need.
They may also be able to offer face to face appointments and these can be accessed via NHS111 (see above) if your symptoms suggest that this is appropriate.
No Place Like Home information leaflets:
- 'Leaving Hospital - what do I need to know and do?'
- 'Help us to keep you safe in hospital - Daily checklist for patients and carers'
- Newtown Road, Carlisle, CA2 7HY
- Tel: 01228 523444
- Homewood Road, Whitehaven, CA28 8JG
- Tel: 01946 693181
- Alston, CA9 3QX
- Tel: 01434 381218
- Tree Road, Brampton, CA8 1TX
- Tel: 01228 608345
- Isel Road, Cockermouth, CA13 9HT
- Tel: 01900 705776
- Crosthwaite Road, Keswick, CA12 5PH
- Tel: 01768 245678
- Ewanrigg Road, Maryport, CA15 8EJ
- Tel: 01946 853333 option 4
- Bridge Lane, Penrith, CA11 8HX
- Tel: 01768 245555
- Cross Lane, Wigton, CA7 9DD
- Tel: 016973 66600
- Park Lane, Workington, CA14 2RW
- Tel: 01900 705000
Free Online Mental Health Services for north Cumbria:
You can access Togetherall here: www.togetherall.com
- Togetherall is a service offering free online support to anyone aged 16 and over in north Cumbria facing increased anxiety and other mental health challenges.
- It provides online peer-peer support, access to an anonymous community and lots of information, as well as courses and resources covering a range of mental health and wellbeing topics.
- The service can be accessed by registering with your postcode and logging in.
- NHS North Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group has commissioned this online service for anyone aged 16 and over.
- This service is already available in the south of the county and was previously known as 'Big White Wall'
Visit Kooth at: www.kooth.com
An online mental wellbeing community with free, safe and anonymous support.
Some of the things you'll find on Kooth:
Helpful articles, personal experiences and tips from young people and our Kooth team.
- Discussion Boards
Start or join a conversation with our friendly Kooth community. Lots of topics to choose from!
- Chat with the team
Chat to our helpful team about anything that’s on your mind. Message us or have a live chat.
- Daily Journal
Write in your own daily journal to track your feelings or emotions and reflect on how you’re doing.
Information on registering for a Dental Practice can be found through
NHS England here.
Or for further advice call their Customer Contact Centre on: 0300 311 22 33.
Emergency Dental treatment and advice:
- Allerdale, Carlisle, Copeland and Eden
Tel: 01228 603900
- Furness and South Lakeland
Tel: 01539 716822
If you or someone you know needs help with day-to-day living because of illness or disability, the links below explain your options and where you can get support.
- Introduction to care and support
- Help from social services and charities
- Care services, equipment and care homes
- Money, work and benefits
- Care after a hospital stay
- Support and benefits for carers
- Practical tips if you care for someone
- Caring for children and young people
- Making decisions for someone else