How you can support men’s mental health this International Men’s Day

Men’s Mental Health


With International Men’s Day on the 19th November, we’re looking at ways you can help support Men’s mental health.

Stress, anxiety and depression can affect everyone, regardless of their gender. There’s no denying that men have made up three-quarters of suicides in the UK since the 1990’s. Proving that men struggle to ask for help more than women.
We’ve put together some practical steps so you can support the man in your life.
Initially, it’s important to spot the signs and symptom of depression. This can include:
  • Saying they feel sad, empty or hopeless
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Not getting any pleasure from activities they usually enjoy
  • Problems with sleeping
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Digestive issues
  • Seeming nervous, restless or tense
  • Drinking more or taking drugs
  • Risk-taking behaviours such as dangerous driving
  • Violent or abusive behaviours
  • Irritability and outbursts of anger
The next step is starting a conversation.
Talking to a loved one about depression is never easy but it is necessary. You could tell him that you’ve noticed some changes and you’re worried, or ask if he is OK. Remind him you love him, and you are there if he wants to talk.
He may not open up immediately, and may get upset or angry with you, but it is important not to pile on the pressure and let him know you are there when he is ready. Knowing he has your support is important.
You can explain what type of help is available.
Research has shown that many men are not aware of the help available to them. A good way to help your loved one is to point him in the direction of his GP or a therapist.
Lots of men will struggle to take the first step such as booking an appointment with their GP. It can help to refer to a male celebrity who has been down the same route, or by talking about another personal account of depression or anxiety.
An online chat conversation can also be a good starting point for men who feel more anxious about talking to their GP or therapist face to face.
Sometimes, self-care and life changes are enough to make a difference to someone struggling with their mental health. You could suggest walks together, find a new hobby to do in the evenings or make a joint pact to cut back on the amount of alcohol consumed between you.
There is always a risk of suicide in people with mental health struggles. If you think your loved one is at risk of suicide, you can get help by calling 999 or taking them to A&E.
Support is also available via The Samaritans by calling 116 123, 24 hours a day.
Make sure you look after your own mental health when dealing with someone else’s. You can do this by making sure you have time for self-care, your friends, family and hobbies.
It can also be helpful to seek counselling or therapy for yourself when dealing with a stressful and emotive situation.
Don’t forget we offer a range of courses when it comes to Mental Health, visit our Mental Health First Aid courses to find out more.
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