HEALTH AND WELLBEING

  • Self-care September Calendar We all lead busy lives and it is easy to forget along the way that we need to take better care of ourselves. Taking time to recharge our batteries to help boost our resilience is important. Action For Happiness have produced a calendar of daily activities for September to help us to be kinder to our ourselves, as well as others. Self-care is an essential part of maintaining good health and wellbeing.

    Action for happiness Self Care September Calender

  • Reconnect with Nature The Cheshire Wildlife Trust has produced a free ‘Wilder Wellbeing’ guide which has plenty of ideas to help you connect with nature at home or outdoors.  Nature can help to boost your health and wellbeing, whether it is listening to your garden birds or taking a walk.  You can download your free digital copy from their website today.

    Whildlife Trust Wilder Wellbeing

  • Have you been spending more time on your phone or laptop as a result of Covid-19? Phone usage is up by about 30% from pre pandemic levels. Whether it’s during a lockdown or as we adjust to new norms, you may have been spending more time on your device/s. Compare The Market: Guide to Screen Addictions and Responsible Digital Use offers insights into screen reliance, responsible digital device use, the impact of Covid-19 on our digital behaviours and suggestions of healthier ways to tackle any unhealthy cycles. Could screen-time habits be interfering with your life, or the wellbeing of yourself, your child or someone you know?

    image of hands holding a mobile phone

    The page also offers useful links to other articles such as those by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health with helpful infographics and guides for parents & families, advice on ‘digital detoxing’, and using a device’s own reporting system to monitor ‘digital wellbeing’.

    infographic illustrating children's view on digital screen time

    For practical online safety advice, information and guidance to help reduce the risks of using the internet, take a look at Suffolk Safeguarding Partnership and e-safer suffolk. These sites offer great resources to help keep children, young people, families and vulnerable adults safe whilst online.

    Suffolk Safeguarding Partnership banner

  • Get Me Out The Four Walls was created to ensure that no mother, father or carer feels alone and isolated at home after the birth of their children. Via informal social meets Get Me Out the Four Walls aim to give as many people the opportunity to escape their house and meet others to help prevent the on-set of parental mental illnesses such as postnatal depression, and to help aid stabilisation of mental health.
    They strive to support parents that are struggling with a mental illness by offering peer support and postnatal depression-specific social meets delivered by our friendly non-judgemental ambassadors. Get Me Out The Four Walls was created to ensure that no mother, father or carer feels alone and isolated at home after the birth of their children. By creating informal social meets we aim to give as many people the opportunity to escape their house and meet others which we believe helps prevent the on-set of parental mental illnesses such as postnatal depression, and helps aid stabilisation of mental health. There are Facebook groups for events and support: Get Me Out The Four Walls Norfolk | Get Me Out The Four Walls Suffolk GMOTFW PND Group or you can make further enquiries by emailing them.

    Get Me Out The Four Walls web image and logo

  • Mental health support for young people If you are finding it tough at the moment and would find it helpful to speak to someone, there is help and support available for you by contacting the organisations below.

    Mental Health contact numbers for young people

  • Mental Health Helpline. First Response is a 24/7 freephone line for people of all ages in Norfolk and Suffolk, and is for anyone who feels their mental health is being adversely affected and needs urgent support. The line is staffed by trained mental health professionals from NSFT, to provide reassurance, self-help advice, support and signposting. You can telephone the helpline on 0808 196 3494.
    First Response ~ NSFT

  • Dedicated cancer helpline relaunches. Designed to support patients with a cancer diagnosis during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic the helpline has been relaunched by East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT) and is available to anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer and has questions about their care. All calls will be answered by experienced staff, who will answer questions wherever possible. If patients call with a clinical query, the call handler will either signpost them to their own clinical team or ask the team to contact the patient directly. The helpline is available from 9am to 4pm on Monday to Friday. Ipswich patients should call 01473 703008, while Colchester patients can ring 01206 745330.

    ESNEFT cancer helpline banner

  • Gentle exercises to do at home. Community Action Suffolk’s initiative This Community Can and instructor Rachel have put together these gentle exercises which can be done at home in the comfort of your living room, to keep you fit for life. Standing and seated, and using water filled plastic milk cartons for weights – take part and enjoy!

    3 screenshots from video of of instructor Rachel from This Community Can performing gentle exercises to do at home

  • Dance Exercise Classes. Want to get moving at home? There are a variety of Live Dance Exercise Classes online. Our wonderful friends at DanceEast have light dance exercises that are great for raising morale, and reducing the negative effects of inactivity and inevitable boredom! There are classes for tots under 4 years, children, teens, over 16s and chair based exercises, spanning creative dance, ballet, contemporary, pilates and yoga, so why not take a look at the classes via their YouTube Channel.

    Dance East logo. Move. Be moved.

    If you’d like more of Strictly Come Dancing feel to your exercise, why not tune in and dance along with FitSteps – Ballroom and Latin dance fitness class devised by Strictly Come Dancing Professionals Ian Waite & Natalie Lowe & World Champion Swimmer Mark Foster. Or Strictly champion Oti Mabuse has a Youtube playlist of her previous online Dance Classes – each one with a different theme, so you can dance along when it suits you.

  • Lift your spirits with a bird table and hanging bird feeders in your garden. Friends/family/neighbours having to isolate? Keep their bird feed stocked. They are a great way to bring wildlife to your doorstep and a joy to watch if mobility can be an issue, particularly coming into spring with young fledglings about! The RSPB have activities to take part in such as RSPB Birdwatch and have online resources to help identify different birds.

  • Keep fit and active indoors even if the gym is closed or your walking or running group has had to suspend activities. If you have a Smart TV and Broadband you can access apps on there to practise a new daily exercise. How about a form of yoga that suits you?

    Try these home fitness workout videos from NHS Fitness Studio. Take your pick from 24 instructor-led videos across aerobics exercise, strength and resistance, and pilates and yoga categories.

  • Health and Happiness. We can take a look at what makes us happy and how we can promote happiness in ourselves and others. Action for Happiness suggests this article with top tips from positive psychology expert, Vanessa King.

    Article advising top tips for health and happiness by Vanessa King

  • For older people who might not be online. Not all older people have access to  digital resources. Manchester University‘s Keeping Well At Home booklet offers information and advice on physical and mental wellbeing during Covid 19. Share, download & print for those who cannot.

    Manchester University Keeping Well at Home booklet

  • SPOT Wellbeing offers support to adults over 50 in Suffolk to improve and maintain mental and physical wellbeing through occupational therapy, physiotherapy and wellbeing interventions. This non-profit organisation offers all sessions for FREE, and these range from exercise plans, walks, gardening, relaxation sessions, to healthy living plans and more. There are a number of ways you can self-refer to SPOT Wellbeing:

    • Tel: 07598 678505
    • Email: Spotwellbeing@gmail.com
    •  Via their Website
    • Direct message on their Facebook page 
    • Referral from your GP, social worker, social prescriber or health professional.

    Spot Wellbeing booklet photo

  • NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme Type 2 diabetes is a condition where your blood glucose (sugar) level is higher than it should be and many people don’t know enough about the condition or how to prevent it. If you are at risk there are lots of small changes you can make to your lifestyle to prevent diabetes from developing.  If you are in the high risk category you can join the free NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme to help you reduce your chances of developing the condition.  Across Suffolk, the local Diabetes Prevention Programme provider is Xyla Health & Wellbeing and there are 3 different way to access the programme:

    • The first is via a direct referral from your GP following a blood test which indicates pre-diabetes.
    • You can refer yourself onto the programme following an eligible blood test from your GP taken within the last 24 months via the NHS website You will need your NHS number, GP surgery name, blood test result & date in order to register.
    • You can take the short questionnaire called  Know Your Risk  on the NHS website and if your score is moderate to high risk you will be automatically be redirected to the NHS website where you can sign up for the programme However this option is only available until 30th September 2021.

    For more information:  Email: info@preventing-diabetes.co.uk  or go to the the NHS Preventing Diabetes website

    NHS Diabetes referral sheet

  • Suffolk Walking Trails Walking is a great way to exercise and is good for the mind & body. Suffolk is filled with natural beauty, glorious coastline to enjoy while you walk. It has plenty of great trails to discover, whether you prefer the countryside, the coast or a route which takes in historic houses, pretty villages or observing birds & wildlife.  If you would like some guidance on where you can go All Trails has some good ideas from easy circular walks to longer routes. TheSuffolkCoast.co.uk has a advice for the county’s best coastal walks.  walkingbritain.co.uk has produced a walking map of Suffolk that is free to download and print at home.

    Pexels woodland walk image

  • Peer Support for Teachers. For many teachers and other education staff in the UK the pandemic has been one of the most challenging times in their professional career. The newspapers report on anxiety, stress and the overwhelming fear faced by teachers who are working on the frontline. Wellbeing Suffolk are there to support you if you are feeling the strain. They have produced a 27 page PDF e-newsletter ‘Wellbeing For Teachers’  which includes a plethora of advice, support and useful information to help you live lockdown well. The Wellbeing Service also runs a peer support webinar for teachers every Wednesday afternoon at 4pm. To get the access code to join in and chat with other teachers, email SuffolkSocials@nsft.nhs.uk

    Wellbeing for teachers PDF

    Wellbeing Suffolk Community Team Teacher's peer support poster

  • Free virtual family club  Starting from January One Life Suffolk are running a family club via Zoom with  fun interactive sessions including activity challenges , cookery demonstrations & recipes and physical exercises.   To join call 01473 718193 or visit the One Life Suffolk websire

    One Life Suffolk Family Club

  • How about writing a journal to record your experiences during the coronavirus outbreak? Day to day life for everyone has altered for a period of time; you could write down your observations of the differences you notice; the kindnesses you’ve been shown; your reflections during isolation; the things you are most looking forward to once life returns to normal again. There are some great ones available to buy online, or just use a notebook or sketchbook to write, draw & collage in, to make your own.

  • Another idea is to treat yourself to a seasonal Almanac. Charting nature as the months change, following the sea, moon cycles, sky at night, flowers & plants and fruit & vegetables – with seasonal recipes, folklore and natural history.

    image of seasonal almanac

  • Guidance on the mental health and wellbeing aspects of coronavirus (Covid-19).  Gov.UK have produced documents offering guidance for the public on the mental health and wellbeing aspects of coronavirus, and an easy to read guide to looking after your feelings and your body throughout the pandemic.

    Suffolk County Council are posting regular ‘Coronavirus in Suffolk’ updates on their Twitter page, on the latest Government guidance as it is released, and other news and guidance which affects our county.

  • YOPD Monthly Meet Up Support Group There is a Young onset friendly Parkinson’s pub support group in Martlesham Suffolk. Whilst the group are not able to meet up face to face at the usual Black Tiles venue due to the current government guidelines, they are still meeting up via Zoom.  For more information on how you can join the group contact Becky Penso

    parkinsons meet up zoom image