Hi, my name is Richard, I am the Customer Service Manager at Ladderstore and is it is Mental Health Awareness Week, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to share with you all, my experience for the mental health awareness course I completed early this year.
Mental Health First Aid for Adults Course
During February this year, I attended a two-day course in Mental Health First aid for Adults in Manchester. Whilst many workplaces have a qualified physical first aider, I think it is equally important to be able to be the first response to any mental health issues that may arise.
Why is the course important?
It may have taken a while for society to get to grips with mental health and it is now becoming accepted that all people will struggle with some form of mental health issue at some point in their life, and I think it is important that people are starting to talk more openly and de-stigmatize it.
At Ladderstore we like to make sure that we not only have the best interests of our customers in mind but also ensure our team at the office are well looked after and we create a safe and comfortable place to work.
What were your main takeaways from the course?
The course was very detailed in equipping me with an array of skills involving listening techniques and ways to identify symptoms to enable me to deal with varying issues that may arise. The mental health first aid course was very insightful and the main takeaways from the course included were identifying early warning signs. These signs included:
Physical symptoms e.g. fatigue, headaches, indigestion, changes in sleep patterns
Behavioural symptoms e.g. including increased smoking and drinking, withdrawal, irritability, restlessness, uncharacteristic errors, and uncharacteristic problems with colleagues.
Psychological symptoms e.g. including anxiety, tearfulness, low mood, indecisiveness, loss of humour, illogical thought processes
Changed attendance patterns (lateness, working long hours, taking leave at short notice).
I would urge anybody to do some form of training around this, not only for reasons of health and safety in the workplace but for a wider understanding of issues that affect a wide and diverse segment of our society.
Mental health does not discriminate, it doesn’t care about your gender, age or race. It’s important that together we open up about mental health and support each other. It is OK not to be OK.
If you are local to us in Bolton, Mhist provides some fantastic work in the area regarding mental health. If you are a little further afield and need someone to speak to who isn’t a friend or relative, Samaritans are always on hand to listen to your concerns.