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schizaphrenia word cloud

Wellbeing Wednesday – 21st July 2021

In this edition

Jane FowlerHappy Wednesday everyone and what a glorious day it is here in Mid Argyll! I am just back from a fortnight Staycation and was very lucky with the weather.  Whilst I have known early July in previous years to see torrential rain for days on end, that wasn’t the case this year – the sun shone most of the time.  Wellbeing was partly a theme of my holidays, with plenty of walking, gardening, cycling and a bit of kayaking around our amazing countryside.  It has definitely given me an energy boost, so the plan is to continue with as much activity as possible while the good weather holds up and the evenings are light.  I hope you all take some time to refresh and re-energise – it has been a tough year and everyone needs a break to switch off and relax.

This week’s edition of Wellbeing Wednesday shines a spotlight on Schizophrenia.  Not a common condition, but many, many people face the challenges of living with it. Understanding how it may impact on friends, families, colleagues or members of the community who use our services raises our awareness and can help them to deal with it.  I hope that you find it helpful and interesting.

We also have a round-up of our World Wellbeing Week activities and some photos of our wellbeing walk.  It was great to catch up and see people face to face – socially distanced of course! See you next week.

Schizophrenia Awareness Day

schizaphrenia word cloudNational Schizophrenia Awareness Day on 25 July 2021 shines a light on the challenges faced by hundreds of thousands of people living with a diagnosis of schizophrenia in the UK and millions more worldwide.  It sets out the steps we can all take to break down the stigma and discrimination surrounding this much misunderstood illness.

Schizophrenia affects the way you think and cope with daily life.  Someone living with schizophrenia may experience hallucinations, delusions, disorganised thinking and lack motivation for daily activities.

Key Facts about Schizophrenia:

  • Schizophrenia is a mental illness that affects the way you think.
  • It affects about 1 in every 100 people.
  • Schizophrenia may develop during early adulthood.
  • There are different types of schizophrenia.
  • You may experience ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ symptoms of schizophrenia.
  • Positive symptoms are when you experience things in addition to reality. For example, you might see or hear things that others don’t. Or believe things that other people do not.
  • Negative symptoms are when you lose the ability to do something. For example, losing motivation to do things or becoming withdrawn.  They often last longer than positive symptoms.
  • Professionals aren’t sure of what causes schizophrenia. There are many different causes. The main factors that can contribute towards the development of schizophrenia are believed to be genetics and the environment.
  • There are different types of treatment available for schizophrenia, such as medication and psychological treatments.
  • Everyone’s experience of schizophrenia will be different.

Myths about Schizophrenia:

facesThere are some myths or mistaken beliefs about schizophrenia which come from the media. For example:

  • ‘Schizophrenia means someone has a split personality’

This is not the case. The mistake may come from the fact that the name schizophrenia’ comes from two Greek words meaning ‘split’ and ‘mind’.

  • ‘Schizophrenia causes people to be violent’

Research shows that only a small number of people with the illness may become violent.  The same way as a small minority of the general public may become violent.

People with schizophrenia are far more likely to be harmed by other people than other people are to be harmed by them but as these incidents can be shocking, the media often report them in a way which emphasises the mental health diagnosis.  This can create fear and stigma in the general public.

How is schizophrenia treated?

There are different types of treatment available.  Medical professionals should work with you to find the right treatment for you.  The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends that you should be offered a combination of medication and talking therapies.

People who live with schizophrenia can respond to treatment differently.

For many, treatment helps to reduce symptoms to help make daily life easier.  You may find that you need to continue with treatment to keep well.

For every 5 people with schizophrenia:

  • 1 will get better within 5 years of their first obvious symptoms.
  • 3 will get better but will have times when they get worse again.
  • 1 will have troublesome symptoms for long periods of time.

You can find more information below:

Rethink

Mental Health UK

NHS

World Wellbeing Week – Recap

tree of lifeWe recently ran some events to acknowledge World Wellbeing Week and we have added some additional resources to the event page just in case you missed out or would like a recap.

Line Managers Sessions

A manager’s guide and FAQ are available on the event page following the webinar from Health Assured on how to make the most from the EAP service in managing your team.

Menopause at work

This session was particularly well received and speaker Kathleen Riach has kindly provided us with a copy of the presentation slides which you can view on the event page.

World Wellbeing Walk

If you missed out on this, don’t worry as our first wellbeing walk is unlikely to be last! The weather was ideal and we were also joined by Pippa’s podcast. There was a lot of support for further walks and perhaps even wellbeing dog walks and bike rides too! Here are some pics from the day. You may want to think about organising a Wellbeing Walk of your own – let us know if you do.

Wellbeing walk

Wellbeing walk

Wellbeing walk

As always, please continue to let us know your thoughts and ideas about the items featured in our Wellbeing Wednesdays each week and send us your suggestions for future topics – we love to hear from you.

The Wellbeing Team:  wellbeing@argyll-bute.gov.uk