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Did you take part in Dry January? West Sussex Council want your feedback

A survey by the council’s Public Health team aims to capture residents’ views and help shape future Dry January campaigns.

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West Sussex County Council are encouraging local residents to share experiences from their Dry January journey.

The County Council’s Public Health team is running a survey to collect participants’ feedback from their month-long, alcohol-free attempt.

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From cutting back during the week to completing the 31-day challenge, or having the motivation to try again – all personal accounts are welcome.

Amanda Jupp, County Council Cabinet Member for Adults and Health, said:

“Congratulations to all our residents who took part in this year’s Dry January campaign. Whether people reached Day 31, or achieved their personal goals, I think they should be proud of taking the first step to leading a healthier life.

“I would urge everyone who gave Dry January a go and tested their resolve to please take a few minutes of their time to answer questions around their experiences. It would be great, for example, to learn about the types of support that helped if the going got tough!”

The survey will enable the council’s Public Health team to capture residents’ views and help shape future Dry January campaigns.

If you would like to complete the survey, please click here.

The survey closes on Wednesday 28 March.

For more information, tips and support on making small changes towards a healthier lifestyle, click here.

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Health & Fitness

Over half of diabetics have been treated for mental health problems, says new study

Diabetes week runs from 11th – 17th June. It aims to encourage people to come together to share stories about, and raise awareness of, diabetes.

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An independent study of people living with type 1 and 2 diabetes, by Censuswide, commissioned by Ieso Digital Health, the UK’s leading provider of online therapy highlights the scale of mental health problems affecting those living with this chronic condition.

This study, compiled by Ieso Digital Health, the UK’s largest provider of online CBT, shows that people living with diabetes are more likely to experience mental health problems compared with the general population.

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About one in four adults in the UK will suffer from a mental health condition each year ii; however, the Ieso study found that over half of patients with diabetes (51%) have sought treatment for stress, anxiety, depression or other mental health problems. Three quarters (75%) of young adults (16-34) believe their mental health has been negatively affected by their diabetes.

According to Sarah Bateup, Chief Clinical Officer, Ieso Digital Health:

“Mental health should be considered an integral part of on-going diabetes care. We need to ensure a multifaceted approach including comprehensive assessment for mental health problems, educating patients to recognise stress and mental health problems and encouraging self‐care.

Providing effective mental health interventions such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) can help patients to address the emotional and behavioural aspects of living with a life-long condition such as diabetes.”

Mental health issues can make it more difficult for diabetes sufferers to alter their diet and lifestyle to comply with medical treatment programmes.

Mental health issues linked to diabetes include feelings of loss, stress, anger, panic attacks, mood disorders, depression, anxiety and eating disorders. A depressed person is less likely to adhere to their diabetes medication or monitoring regimens which are necessary for effective management of diabetes, resulting in poor glycaemic control. Phobic symptoms or anxieties related to self-injection of insulin and self-monitoring of blood glucose are common, resulting in further emotional distress. Stress and depression are known to elevate blood glucose levels, even if medication is taken regularly iv.

Around 700 people get diagnosed with diabetes every day in the UK. That’s the equivalent of one person every two minutes.

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Almost half (46%) of people believe that better awareness would help detect stress and mental health issues, while 43% think discussions of mental health within diabetes-specific appointments would help and that clearer advice from medical bodies would help.

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