Category: Doctors and Consultants

Why We Need To Break The Stigma Around Counselling & Therapy

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Mental health has often been viewed as a taboo topic, and many people feel uncomfortable discussing it. This is especially true when it comes to counselling and therapy. There are many misconceptions about these services, and people often think that they are only for “crazy” people. This could not be further from the truth!

In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of mental health support, and why we need to break the stigma around counselling and therapy.

Stigma Around Counselling (2)

First up, Mental Health is really important.

Mental health is an important part of our overall well-being.

Just like physical health, it is something that we should all take care of.

Unfortunately, mental health is often seen as a taboo topic, and many people feel uncomfortable discussing it. This is especially true when it comes to counselling and therapy.

Counselling and therapy can be extremely beneficial for everyone, not just those with mental illness. These services can help us to deal with stress, anxiety, depression, trauma, relationship issues, and much more. Counselling and therapy provide us with a safe space to explore our thoughts and feelings, and to work through our problems. They can also help us to develop healthy coping mechanisms, and to learn more about ourselves.

Breaking the stigma around counselling and therapy is important. By doing so, we can encourage more people to seek out these services, and to take care of their mental health. We need to normalise the idea of seeking professional help, and make it clear that there is nothing wrong with doing so. Counselling and therapy are vital tools that can help us to live happier, healthier lives.

Why do we feel so judged?

Therapists are human beings, too. It is natural for us to feel apprehensive about being observed and judged during therapy sessions. Feeling vulnerable may bring with it a slew of other emotions, including the sensation of being condemned for exposing ourselves. This is why many of us may avoid confessing to loved ones and friends that we’re going to therapy because we believe they’ll see it as a sign of weakness or that we’re being evaluated or don’t want to be seen as weak.

In actuality, we are the ones who are often in denial about our strengths because we have reached out for assistance and going to therapy is generating a more positive and healthy mentality for ourselves.

It may be helpful to increase our openness and honesty about seeking therapy and feel more confident in telling others and how it’s assisting us. It may be possible to reduce the stigma if we were more open and honest about going to therapy, felt braver in telling others, and how it helps us. It can definitely be difficult to feel at ease discussing psychotherapy with those around you because of the stigma. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people who could benefit from therapy but don’t seek it out due to prejudice.

Here are 3 ways to help fight the mental health stigma

1. Don’t buy into the stigma.

You may feel that mental illness is a sign of weakness and that you or the individual dealing with it should be able to manage it on your own. You or others might treat themselves or one another harshly as a result of these ideas. Education, compassion, being caring to oneself and others, and finding support from people who suffer from mental illnesses can all aid in increasing positive self-esteem, perspective, and overcoming harsh judgment.

2. Choose empowerment over shame.

If you’re having trouble, accept your story and don’t let others persuade you otherwise. Encourage those seeking assistance and support by being encouraging. Be truthful with people around you. Let them see the real you by sharing your strengths, abilities, and objectives. Encourage those who are struggling to do so as well. Remember that how you behave and treat others may have an impact on others’ opinions of you and mental illness in general. In this process, be nice to yourself as well as others. Acceptance is a tough road that takes time to travel.

3. Actively speak up against mental health stigma.

Whether you’re speaking with a group of pals or in front of a large audience, exude confidence and assertiveness while expressing your views. To aid in the advancement of mental health awareness, encourage others to educate others respectfully about mental illness. Remind people that they wouldn’t make fun of someone who has heart disease, diabetes, or cancer. Speaking up will not only educate the public and help reduce stigma, but it could also give courage to others facing a similar challenge.

Let’s start breaking the stigma today!

The Surrey Park Approach

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It’s never straightforward discovering that assisted conception is required, in order to have a family. The information available can be overwhelming and daunting and, at times, it’s difficult to even know where to begin. Infertility most certainly has a language of its own. There’s also an element of hopelessness and despair, when realising that future dreams are dependent on doctors, nurses and medical science, coupled together with a big pinch of luck.

With the NHS cutting the number of funded cycles and tightening the criteria for those eligible, infertile couples are often left stranded, required to find a clinic themselves and self-fund their treatment. With no real guidance, it’s incredibly easy to be misled by statistics, misguided by the false hope of add-ons and mistaken over what treatment options are available. The range of differing advice, plethora of myths and complex data, can mean patients are left utterly bewildered during what is already a confusing and complicated time.

Every person is unique, and each fertility situation is individual. Whether it’s male or female factor, both or unexplained, no two cases are, or should be considered, the same; one size does not fit all when it comes to fertility treatments. Whether it be an initial consultation, IUI, IVF or ICSI, it’s incredibly important to find a clinic which offers honesty, compassion and a tailormade service, for all its clients.

IVF is often billed as a magical cure. However, the sad truth is; in vitro fertilisation won’t work for everyone. It’s therefore only fair and ethical that clinics are transparent, truthfully presenting the reality of each situation. Clients are real people who deserve kindness and fairness as well as a professional service.

The Surrey Park clinic prides itself on offering a unique fertility experience. Its consultant led approach ensures that every patient is matched with a named consultant, who is accessible to them throughout the whole of their medical care. Treatment should not have to be delayed because a doctor is too busy to make a quick decision. Consultants scan and fully immerse themselves in every case, analysing results and being on hand to make any changes to protocols, no matter how small, believing that patients and their well-being must be at the core of all they do.

Whilst fertility data is regulated, by the HFEA, understanding what clinics report can be mind-boggling. Advertised success rates aren’t always as they first appear, for instance, becoming pregnant can be a very different situation to having a live birth. It’s also important to understand that patients are not just a statistic and simply because a woman is of a certain age, or a man has been diagnosed with a specific condition, doesn’t mean that the odds for a successful outcome are the same as another couple with similar circumstances. Surrey Park compassionately manages expectations, never being scared to give patients the whole picture, but providing them with an individual and personalised success rate. When it comes to infertility treatment, nothing should be a surprise and a clinic must be accountable; it needs to have done everything it possibly can, to try to achieve a positive result and tend to the well-being of each patient.

The Surrey Park Clinic team

IVF is tough. It’s invasive, uncomfortable and immensely time consuming, it can feel like a full-time job just trying to keep on top of the scans, tests and appointments required for each cycle. Patients should not have to be shoehorned into a clinic’s opening hours, or rushed along a treatment conveyor belt, just to suit the employees. At Surrey Park, staff do their utmost to fit in around an individual’s needs, treatment should be patient-led, and everyone has the right to flexibility in order to ensure as little stress as possible is experienced.

Infertility is often described as a battle and, at times, it’s not only a battle to conceive it’s also a fight for treatment and access to medical teams. Patients should never have to solely become their own advocates, pushing for consultations or changes to procedures and the right to try another option. Consultants and clients absolutely need to work together, and Surrey Park acknowledges that anyone, who walks through their door, is entitled to transparency, and all the information required to make informed decisions about any next steps.

Mothers speak of how they will do anything for their child, yet so will those desperately hoping to become a mother too, those of us living with infertility. We inject, we undergo surgery, heartbreak and grief. We change our lifestyles, wait and hope, all whilst maintaining the façade of a normal life, getting up each morning and going to work, fitting anguish and clinic appointments into our daily routines. And all for no guarantees, simply for hope, for chance and a dream come true.

Determination can only get an infertile so far but, combine willpower with science and a fully supportive clinic, offering thoughtful and individualised treatment, and that really does go a long way in helping to achieve a positive outcome. Patients have a right to the high level of support and honesty a professional, compassionate clinic, like Surrey Park, provides, under a team holding their best interests at heart.

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