Health & relationships articles
Check out the articles our roving reporters have written about health & relationships issues. From wisdom teeth to surviving a divorce - there's heaps to find out more about!
If you or someone you know need someone to talk to, for any reason, about anything, you can visit eHeadspace (new window), call Lifeline on 13 11 14, or call Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800, 24 hours a day.
Mental health is all about your emotional and social wellbeing. When your mental health is okay, you can cope with life, normal stresses, and school or work.
There are times in life when our minds don't cope so well and mental health problems might arise. There is always help available to you during these times.
Looking After Your Mental Health
There are many ways to look after your mental health even when you don't think it needs special attention. It helps if you can:
- Eat well and exercise regularly
- Get enough sleep and set aside some time in each day to relax
- Put time into activities and relationships that make you feel good
- Set yourself some short-term and long-term goals to look forward to
- Try to deal with problems instead of letting them build up
- Be aware of the possible effects of alcohol and drugs on your state of mind and relationships
These things can really help you keep on top of day-to-day-life and stay on top of regular stress levels and worries.
Mental Health in Difficult Times
One in five Australians are likely to experience some kind of mental health issue during their lifetime. Mental health issues can affect anyone - old or young, rich or poor.
Sometimes worry, stress or depression can get in the way of you doing the things you need and want to do. youthbeyondblue (new window) can give you lots of information and help if you think you have depression or know someone who does.
The Better Health Channel has some helpful pages on worry (new window), stress (new window) and other negative emotions (new window) that give you tips on how to help yourself or someone you know during these tough stages.
For young people, the stresses of growing up, family conflicts, study, work and situations such as living in care or being homeless can all take their toll on your mental health.
It can also be really tough living with, or standing by a friend or relative who has a serious mental health problem. It can be hard to know what to expect, or what you should do.
Ways to Improve the Situation
A mental health problem can just happen. It's nobody's fault. It may seem hard to understand or deal with, but it really helps to speak out and get support instead of trying to deal with it alone. Below are a few steps that are helpful in these situations:
- Acknowledge that there may be a problem
- Don't panic
- Talk about it with a friend or someone else you trust
- Seek out professional advice and information
- Accept support
When we are sick or injured we head straight to the doctor. We should do the same with our mental health and treat it with the same level of care and concern we do a physical problem.
Help for mental health issues may include support, counselling, medication or therapy. Some services and information are especially aimed at young people and understand your needs.
The Victorian Government Health Information - Accessing Mental Health Services is a good way to look for services near your suburb or town it includes listing for general mental health services as well as services specifically for children and teenagers.
Other organisations that can provide help include:
- eHeadspace - a confidential, free and secure space where young people 12 - 25 or their family can chat, email or speak on the phone with a qualified youth mental health professional
- Kids Helpline (new window) - a 24-hour telephone and online counselling service. It includes a directory that you can search to find services and places that can help you in your local area - call them on 1800 55 1800
- Reach Out! - offering fact sheets on mental health and stress that provide advice for you or your friends, information about how a therapist may be able to help, and an overview of treatments available
- Children of Parents with a Mental Illnes (COPMI) - providing information for family members of parents with mental illness
Better Health Channel
Search the BHC site for information and articles about mental health and coping with mental illness.
24-hour telephone and online counselling service. It includes a directory that you can search to find services and places that can help you in your local area - call them on 1800 55 1800
If you or someone you know need someone to talk to, for any reason, about anything, you can call Lifeline on 13 11 14 24 hours a day.
Find out more about depression, anxiety and stress, and where you can get help.
eheadspace is a confidential, free and secure space where young people 12 - 25 or their family can chat, email or speak on the phone with a qualified youth mental health professional
Offers fact sheets on mental health and stress that provide advice for you or your friends, information about how a therapist may be able to help, and an overview of treatments available
depressioNet is a comprehensive resource for information about depression, including help accessing professionals and treatments across Australia.
Provides an introduction to positive mental health is and presents young people's own opinions, thoughts and advice about mental health..
Personal stories from four teenagers whose lives are affected by mental illness. Includes fact sheets on topics like mental illness, eating disorders and drugs, and advice about treatments for mental illness.