In the months after he left professional football, Christopher Mitchell's mental health deteriorated. A spinal injury had forced the ex-Falkirk FC, Bradford City, and Scotland Under 21 international to retire in January 2016 at the age of 27. He became introverted and anxious, his sleeping patterns unravelled, his eating became erratic. He told his sister that he was having suicidal thoughts. His relatives took him to the doctor, who prescribed medication. But in May 2016, he took his own life at a railway line close to the family house in Stirling. His father, Philip Mitchell, recalled trying to make sense of it all in the weeks that followed. "And we were finding out from players that, although there were support services in place in Scottish football, the players weren't seeking the help available to them, or they just didn't know [about it]," he told Al Jazeera. In 2017, Philip and his family launched the Chris Mitchell Foundation, which aims to challenge the stigma associated with … [Read more...] about Football’s mental health crisis: Silence broken but what’s next?
Stirling health professionals
NHS Forth Valley health chiefs this week insisted they were making progress in the drive to improve waiting times in the area. Latest data on how long people were waiting for treatment was given at NHS Forth Valley’s annual review on Wednesday at Forth Valley Royal Hospital. NHS Forth Valley has failed over the last 12 months to meet a number of treatment time targets laid down by the Scottish Government. In the first three months of last year, only 79.7 per cent of patients with suspicion of cancer began treatment within 62 days of receipt of referral against a Government target of 95 per cent. However, NHS Forth Valley chief executive Cathie Cowan said by January of this year, the figure was up to 86.1 per cent. In March 2018, just 45.5 per cent of patients referred to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) were seen within 18 weeks. This jumped to 95.2 per cent in January. And in accident and emergency, in the 12 months to March 2018, 86.9 per cent of NHS Forth … [Read more...] about Health board chiefs praise progress after ‘falling off waiting times cliff-face’
A top mental health charity is urging males to seek help after two men took their own lives within minutes of each other. Suicide is the biggest killer of men under the age of 45 and charity Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) say more needs to be done following the deaths of two men, who both jumped off the Humber Bridge in the early hours of Saturday, December 29. One of those who has tragically died is Sam Conlin, 24, who his father says had insecurities about his appearance following an eight year-long battle with his mental health. The second man, believed to be in his 40s from Grimsby, has not yet been named by police. Both men are still classed as missing as neither of their bodies have been found. Simon Gunning, CEO of the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), said: "Suicide remains the single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK, where three in every four suicides are male. "This is an issue that we must tackle at a societal level so that positive change can be … [Read more...] about Two lives lost in minutes: Why we must take mental health seriously
Monty Python star and travel documentary maker Michael Palin, 1960s supermodel Twiggy, and acclaimed filmmaker Christopher Nolan have joined a long list of stars from the world of entertainment, sports and the arts to be honoured by the Queen. See the full Welsh list here They are joined in the 2019 New Year Honours List by three British divers who have been awarded MBEs for helping to save a youth football team trapped inside a flooded cave in Thailand during the summer. Four other British cave divers involved in the operation are also receiving civilian gallantry awards for exceptional bravery protecting others. The 2019 New Year Honours List has 1,148 recipients which also includes 43 people recognised for their acts responding to the terror attacks in Manchester and London in 2017. A Queen's Commendation for Bravery also goes to 14-year-old Joe Rowlands who saved his father Paul from drowning after their kayak capsized off Anglesey. Best-selling author Philip Pullman, who credits … [Read more...] about The full Queen’s New Year’s Honours List for 2019
A teenage girl from Moira is raising money for mental health charity MIND by walking 1,000 miles in 2019 after suffering with anxiety and depression during her teenage years. Rebecca Lacey, 19, said she wants to raise awareness for mental health problems and reduce the stigma that prevents mental health being widely and openly discussed. She plans to do so by walking the same distance as a trip from Burton to Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland, between January 1 and December, 31, 2019. Rebecca said: "It's really personal to me. I've suffered with anxiety and depression myself. "Then there's all these recent statistics that have come out with regard to male suicide, it's shocking." Although there has been a recent slump in suicide rates, there were still 5,821 suicides in the UK last year, with men three times more likely to kill themselves than women, according to statistics from mental health support charity Samaritans. There has also been a sharp increase in people under 18 seeking … [Read more...] about Teen to walk 1,000 miles for charity after suffering mental health problems