Why I think it’s fantastic the NHS will prescribe self-help books, by Nita Siani
Given that I have such a strong interest in mind wellbeing, one of the things I do is read and watch what the government are doing to support healthy minds. In 2012 mind wellbeing received a lot of press as the government finally acknowledged that there is ‘No Health without Mental Health’. The Mental Health debate last year was prevalent in the media as was the Channel 4 Goes Mad series.
Now, on the back of new research which shows that self-help books can be effective at treating depression, stress and anxiety, doctors are being encouraged to start prescribing books. I think it’s absolutely marvellous! It makes so much sense for the NHS to prescribe self-help books as an alternative or in addition to prescribing medication and talking therapies to treat mental illness.
I’ve been on both sides of the fence – I’ve taken anti-depressants, and have also tried to read self-help books to support me in my own recovery of depression, stress and anxiety. I wish I’d had my book prescribed to me when I was suffering. I’ve written down all the techniques that helped me to come off my anti-depressants and to recover – permanently – seven years ago. As The Reading Agency is also supporting the general public through its Mind Boosting Books programme, I think this also demonstrates how important self-help books are in today’s society.
Watch this space for the latest news, tips and techniques on healthy mind well-being based on my own experiences!