One in five adults will experience some form of Mental health issue at some stage in their life. This can include heightened anxiety, stress and depression.
In the community
- Remain calm and ask how you can help.
- Allow time for interaction and decision making.
- Use short, clear sentences.
- Keep your voice calm and unhurried.
- Allow the person space.
- Avoid pressuring the person.
- Avoid direct eye contact and touching.
- Empathise without agreeing.
- If the situation escalates to the point where you believe there is a risk, ask if you can contact someone to assist.
In the workplace
Most work environments will not require adjustments for someone dealing with a Mental health issue. As with any disability, disclosure is not mandatory. If someone chooses to disclose that they have a Mental health issue which may impact on their work, ask if they are happy to provide a Management Plan.
Reassure the person that this will not be used to discriminate against them and will be kept confidential.
The Management Plan could include:
- what might trigger an episode so it can be avoided if possible.
- the indicators of the onset of an episode so that strategies can be put in place quickly and quietly.
- the most effective strategies to use in order to manage an episode.
- how best to assist should an episode become unmanageable.
- the names and numbers of people to contact if necessary.