Help with mental health

Sometimes mental health challenges can follow a bereavement.

It is understandable that bereavement can lead to some people suffering mental health challenges.

It is not a sign of failure to be diagnosed with a mental health disorder at this time.

If you think you may have a mental health disorder, it is important to seek an assessment and diagnosis so you can be given correct treatment, and recover.

You may be diagnosed as having complex grief reactions or a condition such as Prolonged Grief Disorder or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

It is normal at that stage to be offered therapy, provided by a specialist professional who is experienced in helping people recover. (This is different to grief support).

Therapy given is often talk-based, and over a number of sessions. Sometimes other kinds of treatment are offered too.

Many people find therapy enables them to restore their mental wellbeing, and it is important to get this help early and not delay.

When and how to seek an assessment of mental health

If your bereavement was four or more weeks ago, consider if you are experiencing one or more of these things:

  • My reactions are the same or worsening.
  • I have new reactions emerging.
  • I am suffering flashbacks or nightmares of what happened, or could happen, real or imagined.
  • I feel numb, or unable to feel anything positive.
  • I constantly think about what has happened, to the exclusion of other things I need to think about.
  • I cannot eat or sleep normally.
  • I am having suicidal thoughts.

These things are a guide only, and do not enable you to self-diagnose. If you have any reason to think you might need help, it is important to seek help.

Show your GP this information, and seek an assessment by a mental health specialist who understands treatment of disorders relating to bereavement or trauma.

If your GP is struggling to know how to help, contact your Sudden case worker.

With your permission, your case worker can seek an assessment through your GP or another route.