People in Ireland living with mental health problems have been making an increasing number of calls to a mental health support advice line. St Patrick’s Mental Health Support Service is a specially dedicated telephone line to help improve the wellness of people who are suffering from a range of mental health problems. New figures have shown that last year, the calls to this advice line rose significantly, with more than five people every day calling the line to talk about problems affecting their wellbeing, and looking for support.
The service, based at St Patrick’s University Hospital in Dublin said that this is a significant increase, especially from those who are dealing with depression, addictions and eating disorders, which are some of the most common mental health problems affecting people in the UK.
Staff at the hospital claim that these calls are often the start of the caller being able to turn their life around, and the Chief Executive, Paul Gilligan, also said that he found it reassuring to see that more people were accessing the support they needed rather than being forced to suffer in silence. He also celebrated the fact that the increase may mean that people are seeking help earlier than before, as previous studies have shown that those with mental health problems often take a long time to access the support they need.
Data shows that 1,947 calls were made last year, which has increased from 1,853 the previous year, and this total included 382 to talk about depression, 285 suffering from anxiety and 180 to discuss addiction support. There was also a 175 percent rise in callers suffering from eating disorders – up from 44 to 121.
This confidential telephone service can be accessed Monday through to Friday by dialing (01) 2493333