Mental Health

Anxiety and Depression (Adults)

Some links on this page have been colour coded to make it easier to find the information you need:

Quick Read
In-depth
Clinical level

Emergencies and urgent support

In an emergency if you or someone else has seriously injured themselves, taken an overdose or are on the point of doing so call 999 or go directly to A&E. Other support is provided under

LOCAL SUPPORT - SELF REFERRAL

the local NHS PSYCHOLOGY SERVICE

From Patient info
Information on the self-referral process from patient info and what to expect
Refer Yourself for NHS Talking Therapy NHS Self Referral for Talking Therapy (Counselling) | Patient

From Buckinghamshire Talking Therapies
Provide direct mental health support without you needing to see your GP. This is a free NHS service to patients over the age of 18, who attend a Buckinghamshire GP.

IMMEDIATE PHONE ADVICE

From Oxford Health NHS foundation trust
“It operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week for people who need mental health care when their situation is not life threatening.”
When you need to find out where to get help and to access support from mental health professionals for a range of conditions and symptoms you can

THE 5 STEPS TO WELLBEING

The 5 steps to wellbeing are a very helpful starting point to improving mental wellbeing. The 5 steps are explained including available local support, under

We recommend that everyone looks at these steps as even if you do go on to have treatments such as talking therapy or medication these 5 simple steps can provide real benefit which can continue after your anxiety or mood improve. Equally for some people they are all that are required to improve their mood and reduce their anxiety.

Local support for OTHER ISSUES which can impact on mental health

Often there is no clear cause which can be identified for anxiety or depression, but on other occasions there is and understanding how a particular cause can be supported can make a real difference, in addition to any of the other treatments used in anxiety and depression.

HABITS

Some habits can contribute to anxiety or depression and getting support for them directly can significantly help in reducing anxiety and/or depression. Direct support can be found here for:

PRESENT CIRCUMSTANCES

Social isolation, issues at college, work or with finances can all lead to anxiety and depression for which there is some excellent support locally:

EVENTS IN YOUR LIFE

Some events in your life can also contribute to anxiety and depression including bereavement and crime related events and again getting direct support for these issues can help significantly reduce anxiety and/or depression.

Issues at home including relationships

Other issues at home can be an important source of anxiety and depression. See under:

Patient groups

There is support for different patient groups see under
Support For All  this includes as examples

MEDICALly related

Medical conditions such as a long-term condition (e.g., diabetes) or pregnancy can be a source of mood changes and understanding this and the support available locally can be helpful.

ASSOCIATED SYMPTOMS

Mental health can be impacted by:

An example of some of the local support

You will find the local support on all the links above and it is better to look at these to find the full range of support. However, just as an example, the local NHS psychology service offers support to veterans, carers of patients with dementia, patients with long term conditions (diabetes, respiratory conditions (COPD, chronic asthma etc), heart conditions, and long covid), postnatal patients and patients with employment related issues.

From Buckinghamshire Talking Therapies
Provide direct mental health support without you needing to see your GP. This is a free NHS service to patients over the age of 18, who attend a Buckinghamshire GP.

Subsidised counselling

From Mind Buckinghamshire
How can we help? includes subsidised counselling Buckinghamshire Mind – Service

Free counselling up to the age of 21

From Mind Buckinghamshire
Counselling for Young People: “Our service offers compassionate and confidential support to young people (aged 13-21) facing emotional and mental health challenges. This service is free.” Counselling for Young People – Bucks Mind

Directory of local services – Buckinghamshire Mind Guide

From Mind Buckinghamshire
“This is a directory of services, apps and other help available to anyone who is worried about their own mental health and well-being or that of a friend or relative. It provides a database that can be easily searched and navigated so that people with a mental health problem can access the support they need.”
Buckinghamshire Mind Guide Guides Archive – Bucks Mind

SAFE HAVEN

From Bucks Safe Haven
offers a safe and supportive environment, for anyone living in Buckinghamshire ages 18 years or over as an alternative to A&E, for people experiencing mental health crisis. Buckinghamshire Mind – Safe Haven

books from your local library

Some patients have found books on mental health, both about managing common mental health conditions, and in some case personal stories helpful.

From Reading Well
“Reading Well for mental health provides helpful information and support for managing common mental health conditions, or dealing with difficult feelings and experiences. The books are available to borrow from your local library.”
Mental Health Mental health | Reading Well booklists | Books | Reading Well

Local library services to support mental health

Local libraries provide free access to books (including eBooks and eAudiobooks), and Wi-Fi as well as a pleasant environment to read. Libraries also provide some free access to a computer every day.

Information on local library services can be found under

Community adult mental health team

Though you cannot self-refer to these services, if you are already under the care of the community adult mental health team you can contact them directly. The contact details for Aylesbury and Chiltern teams can be found under
Adult Mental Health Teams Adult Mental Health Teams – Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust

NATIONAL SUPPORT - SELF REFERRAL

NATIONAL HELPLINES

There are numerous excellent national helplines, some available 24 hours a day. You can access them by clicking below.

ANY AGE

From Anxiety UK
Helpline services: We offer support, advice and information on all anxiety, stress and anxiety-based depression conditions Our Helpline Services – Anxiety UK

From Samaritans
Helpline: “You can get in touch about anything that’s troubling you, no matter how large or small the issue feels. We’re here to listen, no judgement, no pressure, and help you work through what’s on your mind. We’ll never tell you what to do. We’re here 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.How we can help | How Samaritans can help you | Samaritans

From Campaign against living miserably (CALM)
Helpline: “Our helpline is for people in the UK who are down or have hit a wall for any reason, who need to talk or find information and support “. Get Help – Campaign Against Living Miserably

From Support line
SupportLine provides a confidential telephone helpline offering emotional support to any individual on any issue. Contact us: Contact Us

From Sane Line
SANE provides emotional support, guidance and information to anyone affected by mental illness, including families, friends and carers. Emotional Support

From Mood Swings
Helpline: We can provide information, advice and support on a range of mental health issues which may be of help to you or allow you to be an enabling support to your loved one. Online Support – Moodswings Network

Text service

From Shout
“Shout 85258 is a free, confidential, 24/7 text messaging support service for anyone who is struggling to cope.” Get help Get help – free, 24/7, confidential mental health text support service | Shout 85258

UNDER 25 text service

From The MIX
Get Support : Essential support for under 25s Get Support – The Mix

FREQUENTY ASKED QUESTIONS - GENERAL INFORMATION

CHANGES IN PHYSICAL SYMPTOMS, MENTAL SYMPTOMS AND BEHAVIOURS

The NHS website describes how your feelings and symptoms can change with anxiety and depression

GENERAL INFORMATION

From the NHS, the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Patient info, and NICE
Anxiety and panic attacks

Depression

From Every Mind Matter
NHS website dedicated to mental health

From Buckinghamshire Talking Therapies
The local NHS psychological service has a number of links to self-help leaflets , internet based courses , books you can get from your local library in Buckinghamshire, numerous national Apps. Further resources – NHS Buckinghamshire Talking Therapies NHS Buckinghamshire Talking Therapies

SPECIFIC PATIENT GROUPS

From the Royal College of Psychiatrists
Older adults
Depression in older adults Depression in older adults | Royal College of Psychiatrists

From NICE
Depression- antenatal and postnatal Depression – antenatal and postnatal | Health topics A to Z | CKS | NICE

SELF-HARMING

From the NHS
Self-harm (includes articles on where to get help, ways to avoid and assessments and treatment Self-harm – NHS

From the Royal College of Psychiatrists

From Patient info
Self-harm in Young People Self harm in young people | Causes and Treatment | Patient

FREQUENTY ASKED QUESTIONS -TREATMENT

Treatment for anxiety or depression can involve a combination of lifestyle changes, talking therapies (such as cognitive behavioural therapy) and potentially medication. Lifestyle changes and talking therapies have already been covered under the “Local support – self referral” section but there is further information on all the treatment options below.

Wellbeing tips from the NHS

From Every Mind Matters
NHS website dedicated to mental health
Mental wellbeing tips Mental wellbeing tips – Every Mind Matters – NHS

THE 5 STEPS TO WELLBEING

The 5 steps to wellbeing are a very helpful starting point to improving mental wellbeing. The 5 steps are explained in detail including available local support, under

We recommend that everyone looks at these steps as even if you do go on to have treatments such as talking therapy or medication these 5 simple steps can provide real benefit which can continue after your anxiety or mood improve. Equally for some people they are all that are required to improve their mood and reduce their anxiety.

TALKING THERAPY (COGNITIVE BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY)

Talking therapies can be very helpful for all levels of anxiety and depression, including for stress. They can be accessed directly without having to go through a GP practice see under the section “local support – self referral” which includes the local NHS psychology service. A particular type of talking therapy called cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), in particular, is considered to be the first line of treatment in most cases of anxiety.

From NHS choices and Patient info
Overview – Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)

From Patient info
Refer Yourself for NHS Talking Therapy NHS Self Referral for Talking Therapy (Counselling) | Patient

From Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN)
Detailed evidence-based guidelines produced for patients based on a systematic review of the scientific literature. Very helpfully the patient booklet, shows how strong the evidence is for any treatment recommendation made.
Treating depression without using prescribed medication Treating depression without using prescribed medication (sign.ac.uk)

From NICE
NICE explain at what point clinicians should consider offering CBT
Scenario: Management of a person with generalized anxiety disorder: Step 2 CBT  Scenario: Management | Management | Generalized anxiety disorder | CKS | NICE

Overview

From Oxford Health NHS foundation Trust
Find out more about mental health conditions, treatments and medications, just search under conditions for anxiety or depression. Provides answers to common questions and also leaflets for common drugs Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust Home

WHEN TO CONSIDER MEDICATION in anxiety

As NICE suggest
Antidepressant are not normally considered until step 3 as an alternative to high-intensity psychological interventions (such as cognitive behavioural therapy), when simple low-intensity psychological interventions based on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) principles (Step 2) have not helped. Scenario: Management | Management | Generalized anxiety disorder | CKS | NICE

From NICE
How should I manage a person with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)? Scenario: Management | Management | Generalized anxiety disorder | CKS | NICE

WHEN TO CONSIDER MEDICATION in depression

As the NHS suggests
“For moderate to severe depression, a combination of talking therapy and antidepressants is often recommended.”
Overview – Depression in adults – NHS

As NICE suggests
Do not routinely offer an antidepressant as first-line treatment. Scenario: Initial management | Management | Depression | CKS | NICE

From Patient info
Antidepressants Antidepressants | Tricyclic, SSRI and MAOI | Patient

From NICE
How should I manage depression in primary care? Scenario: Initial management | Management | Depression | CKS | NICE

WHICH ANTIDEPRESSANT IS CHOSEN?

From NICE
The choices are explained by NICE

ANTIDEPRESSANT SIDE EFFECTS

Antidepressants side effects can be an issue initially in the first few weeks, but generally improve. Antidepressants are explained further below including details on side effects:

From the NHS 
Antidepressants Antidepressants – NHS

From Patient info

From the British National Formulary ( NICE)
Antidepressant drugs Antidepressant drugs | Treatment summary | BNF content published by NICE

As you see medication is not the first line treatment in many cases. Talking therapies should always be offered for both depression and anxiety and this is often the first line treatment offered and is also offered even if medication is also chosen by patients. Importantly talking therapies can be accessed through self-referral without needing to go through your GP practice as covered in the “local support – self-.

FREQUENTY ASKED QUESTIONS - OTHER SUPPORT

FINDING BROAD SUPPORT ON THIS WEBSITE FOR OTHER ISSUES

Sometimes anxiety and depression can relate to other habits, a role, circumstances such as with work or an event including bereavement. Sometimes been supported with these other issues can be very helpful.

See the “local support self-referral section” section on this page, under “Support for specific issues or circumstances which can contribute to depression or anxiety” there are links to local and national support which can help.

How to find local and national helplines on this website

In addition, there are many national charities offering helpline support and some of these offer support locally. Some of the national groups can be found by considering the group relevant to you. So, for example if you have a long-term condition (e.g., diabetes), role (e.g., veteran), or other issue (e.g., with finances or at work) then if you look at that section of the website you will often be able to find a local or national group supporting that role/ condition/ circumstance.

Advice on life’s challengers from the NHS

From Every Mind Matters
NHS website dedicated to mental health
Dealing with life’s challenges Dealing with life’s challenges – Every Mind Matters – NHS

From the NHS
Advice for life situations and events Advice for life situations and events – NHS

SUPPORTING OTHERS

From the NHS and Patient info
How to help someone with depression

From Patient info
How to support someone through a panic attack What to do if someone is having a panic attack | Patient

Supporting others advice from the NHS

From Every Mind Matters
NHS website dedicated to mental health
Supporting others Supporting others – Every Mind Matters – NHS

Videos and podcasts

On the videos and podcasts page there are links to some relevant videos and podcasts covering the topic of anxiety and depression.

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