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Looking after mental health at work

By Paperstone on January 2, 2019 in Uncategorized

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Mental health used to be a taboo subject. But times have changed.

We are now encouraged to talk more openly about our mental health and our feelings. The stigma that surrounded mental health issues is slowly reducing.

One in four people will experience a mental health problem this year. That means that one of your colleagues or friends could be experiencing an issue right now.

Mental health in the workplace

A recent government report into mental health at work unearthed some startling statistics:

• Around 15% of people in work in England have symptoms of a mental health problem.
• 300,000 people with a long-term mental health condition lose their jobs every year.
• The economic cost of poor mental health, from lost output, is £74 billion to £99 billion per year.

There is a strong correlation between mental health wellbeing and higher levels of productivity. Studies have found that addressing mental wellbeing at work can increase productivity by up to 12%.

Large corporates are putting in place schemes and processes to help their employees maintain mental wellbeing. But what can small businesses, with less resources do?

Mental Health at Work has a wide range of information and resources to help businesses improve their policies and practices. MIND, the mental health charity, also offers a range of free resources to help small businesses understand and help employees’ mental wellbeing. Time to change is a campaign focused on getting more people to talk about mental health, and provides a wide range of information and toolkits.

Beat the winter blues

At this time of year the short days and lack of light can lead to a specific type of depression – seasonal affective disorder (SAD). The NHS estimates that one in 15 people in the UK suffer from SAD. For some people, SAD is so debilitating that they struggle to function in winter. Others may experience a milder version called sub-syndromal SAD or ‘winter blues’.

There is a simple solution that helps out many people with these ‘winter blues’. A specific type of bulb that simulates natural light can reduce the symptoms. Paperstone supplies desk lamps with these bulbs. These lights have been proven to help boost concentration and alertness.

Reach out for help

If you are struggling with mental wellbeing ask for help. Reach out to friends and family, or at work to your colleagues and managers. If you can’t talk to people around you, here is a list of mental health help and support services.

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