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You are not alone

13 October 2017 Blog
Mental health
One in five Aussies are affected by a mental illness annually but so often we don’t seek help because of the stigma that we perceive. We even forget that it is an illness not just a feeling. Our Social Worker Maree Jaekel shares her tips about what to do if you are concerned about your emotional wellbeing.

Often we think “I should be able to cope with this”, “other people have worse situations in their life”, “what will my family and friends think if they really knew me”.

Depression and anxiety are the most common mental illnesses; about one in five people will experience it sometime in their life. It is even more common after a serious health event or other major change in your life.

You can take control

Talk about it

Check in with your GP or another health professional and find out if what you are feeling is normal for your situation or an experience of a mental illness.

Accept treatment

Discuss options for help and consider counselling, medication or a combination of therapies.

Look after yourself

With or without professional help you can take action to look after your mental health.


Don’t bottle up your feelings, talk to friends, family or a professional


Spend time with people who make you feel good, let them know you need them to listen rather than give advice or fix the situation


Give yourself time to adjust and come to terms with your new situation


How have you coped with previous stressful situations and what helped


Make time to do activities or attend events that you enjoy


Take time to relax and reduce stress, try relaxation techniques


Maintain a good diet, sleep routine and have regular exercise

With the right treatment, most people recover from depression and anxiety!

For more help

Lifeline: 13 11 14

Beyond Blue: 1300 22 4636 or www.beyondblue.org.au

Mindhealthconnect: www.mindhealthconnect.org.au

World Mental Health Day: www.1010.org.au

Maree Jaekel - Social Worker and Counsellor

Maree Jaekel is a qualified social worker and counsellor at St John of God Bendigo Hospital. She provides support to outpatients, inpatients and oncology patients at the hospital. She is passionate about holistic, person centred care and is a member of the allied health team.