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Wellbeing

Mental Health Awareness Week

Posted 12 May 2014

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<p>Debt and mental health difficulties often go hand-in-hand. If you’ve been suffering as a result of your debt worries, it might be time to seek help.</p>

Mental Health Awareness Week: Are debts affecting your health?

On the eve of Mental Health Awareness Week (which kicks off May 12th) we’re asking if you think your mental health has been affected by debt worries. If it has, you’re not alone.

1 in 3

Research* conducted for us earlier this year revealed that, of the people in the UK who do worry about their debts either some or all of the time, more than one in three feel their mental health has been affected as a result. This is very worrying, as the stress people are experiencing over their finances could lead to a serious condition like depression or anxiety developing.

One factor contributing to their mental health concerns might be lack of sleep. Half of the respondents with debt concerns we spoke to said they had experienced difficulties sleeping at night as a result. A good night’s rest is extremely important to a person’s health and wellbeing, and not getting enough of it can lead to even more stress.

Don’t struggle alone

Struggling with problem debts can be an extremely isolating experience, and not having anyone to share your troubles with might put you at a greater risk of experiencing mental health difficulties. It also makes it harder to get back on top of your finances, as you may prefer to ignore the problem rather than face it.

However, not acting as soon as you can could well lead to the problem spiralling, as the amount you owe and the interest attached to it will mount, along with the letters and phone calls you receive from your lenders. But by getting advice and support with your debt, you have the chance to take a step on the road to recovery.

Here to help

Debt Advisory Centre helps many people just like you to find a suitable solution to their debt problem. We can offer advice and support, and help you to choose the solution that’s right for you. Together, we can help you get back on top of your finances.

And while it’s important you seek expert advice if you’re worried about your debts, it’s also vital you get help if you’re worried about your health in any way. Your GP can provide you with advice on how to treat the problems you’ve been having, and there are other places you can turn for support if you feel that your mental health has suffered as a result of worrying about your finances.

Mind provides information on who you can call if you’re having difficulties (along with offering a useful guide to debt and mental illness), while the Samaritans have trained volunteers available to talk to you at any time of the day or night.

*OnePoll questioned a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults aged 18 and over between 10th January and 15th January 2014.

by Emily Bancroft

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.