Life Matters is building a community that supports young people around New Zealand suffering with anxiety, depression and other mental health issues.
Navigating the mental health system can be complicated.Research done by Life Matters have found that there are 5 key issues for individuals trying to reach out for help in New Zealand
Difficulty Accessing Services - Finding a service that has enough room, especially during the spike in mental health issues during the Covid-19 lockdown is a problem for people all around New Zealand
Lack of Compassion - Many mental health professionals are volunteers and can be overworked, meaning that people needing treatment for mental health do not get the correct attention needed to help overcome mental health issues.
Lack of Follow-up - Often, after seeing a mental health professionals, people are just left to go on with life by themselves. Follow-ups are just as important as treatment.
Inadequate support for families and loved ones - The mental health system provides no guidance to families who have lost a loved one to suicide. After a suicide, comes grief. Huge, monumental, incomprehensible grief. While navigating this grief a family is also then confronted by the vicious bureaucratic realities of death: funeral expenses, tying up loose ends, debt collection agencies, legal matters and, too often, questions of culpability.
Stigma - seeking health can be difficult for anybody, especially when there is a stigma around mental health issues and seeking help. We should be committed to ending the stigma surrounding suicide and mental illness. If we, as a society, can talk loudly about these issues that affect so many of us, then these barriers to support can be broken down.
Each of these key issues have been identified by Life Matters as reasons for individuals not truely getting the help they need.
Some important advice from Life Matters:
What to look out for?
What are the warning signs?
If you are worried someone might be thinking about suicide, do not be afraid to ask them directly.
Most people thinking about taking their life will try to let someone know, but they often won’t say this directly.
You may notice:
- Weight loss or gain
- No hope for the future
- Saying they want to die or kill themselves
- They feel worthless, guilty or ashamed
- Stop taking medications
- Hurting themselves
- Becoming obsessed with death
In an emergency or if you feel you or someone you know is at risk, dial 111.
To read more about Life Matters CLICK HERE