Only 2 in 5 people in Wales feel comfortable
discussing their mental health

New figures, released on Time to Talk Day (7 February), reveal that less than half (39%) of people in Wales feel comfortable discussing their mental health with their friends and family, and only 7% of people feel comfortable discussing their mental health in group conversations online.

Time to Change Wales is urging everyone to use Time to Talk Day as an opportunity to engage with friends and family in a real and meaningful way – by having a conversation about mental health. The campaign maintains that conversations have the power to change lives, however they take place - face to face, over the phone, or on social media.

The independent survey of over 5,300 UK adults, which includes 1,260 adults in Wales, was commissioned to mark Time to Talk Day, a nationwide push to get people talking more openly about mental health. The survey also reveals data that shows that over half (51%) of people in the UK say we do not need to talk to friends ‘in real life’ because we are kept up to date via social media.

Time to Talk Day was established six years ago. Each year it asks the nation to have a conversation about mental health to help break the stigma that can surround mental health problems. Once again the event is UK-wide as Time to Change Wales partners with Time to Change in England, See Me in Scotland and Change Your Mind in Northern Ireland. 

“We might think we know how our friends are doing because we’ve seen their latest post on social media. However, in a world where many of us only share our ‘best bits’ online we’re urging everyone to use Time to Talk Day as an opportunity to break down those barriers and have real and meaningful conversations about their mental health.”

Alex, 28, from Caerphilly, lives with anxiety and depression and talks about the importance of having real life conversations about mental health: “When I’m experiencing low mood, I tell my friends about it. Texting can take away the personal touch of a serious topic, which is why I tend to meet up or call my friends to talk about what I’m going through and I instantly feel a lot better. Time to Talk Day is important because it’s a day where one person can actually make a massive difference to someone who’s going through mental health problems.”

Dinah, 22, from North Wales, who has OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and anxiety, mentions how starting a conversation around mental health could encourage others to seek help and support: “Starting a conversation around mental health reminds me that I’m not alone and that it’s OK to not be OK. My mental health conditions have made me feel isolated but since talking to my supportive, close-knit community, I have realised that my mental health conditions have made me who I am today and I am stronger because of it. I believe that Time to Talk Day is a catalyst for bringing people together and I fully support the efforts made to end the stigma around mental health.”

Thousands of conversations about mental health are expected to take place this Time to Talk Day in Wales, with events being held across the nation in organisations ranging from schools and universities to health boards and businesses of all sizes. A huge conversation will take place on social media on the day using the hashtag #TimetoTalk and #AmseriSiarad in Welsh.

Join in the conversation online using the hashtag #timetotalk on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages.

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