The Covid-19 pandemic made 2020 an incredibly challenging year for us all. With the vaccine rollout underway, we have reason to be hopeful for 2021. By making some small changes, you can get the New Year off to a healthier start and take control of your wellbeing.
Statistics show that a quarter of patients who died with coronavirus in England had diabetes, and people who are overweight or smoke are also at much higher risk of becoming seriously ill or dying from the disease.
Dr Craig Gillespie, chair of NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Making changes to your lifestyle can feel overwhelming at times, and sometimes it might feel easier to just do nothing. There is plenty of support available and making little adjustments, such as exercising more, eating a healthier diet and quitting smoking, really can have a big impact on how you feel. It isn’t just about looking after your body, living a healthier life can boost your mental health too. If you’re feeling low, getting active could make a huge difference to your mood.”
On 1 January, a new talking therapies service launched to help anyone aged over 16 in the south Sefton, Southport and Formby areas to deal with common mental health difficulties. Talking Matters Sefton has been developed in partnership with the CCGs to offer easy access to high-quality talking therapies. You can self refer online or by phone, or your GP can make a referral.
Dr Rob Caudwell, chair of NHS Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Making changes to your lifestyle can not only help improve your physical and mental health, but it can also help protect you from becoming seriously unwell with Covid-19. Consider taking a Vitamin D supplement during the winter months, as it is difficult to get enough of that during the shorter daylight hours. Vitamin D helps to control the amount of calcium and phosphate in our bodies – needed for healthy bones, teeth, and muscles. Eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, combined with getting active and staying connected with people can all help to improve your health – both physically and mentally.”
Margaret Jones, Director of Public Health for Sefton, said: “This year has been tough for everyone, and it hasn’t always been easy for any of us to stay motivated or make healthy choices. If you want to make a change, you do not have to do it alone. Living Well Sefton is a free service that can support you in living a healthier lifestyle. You can call them on 0300 323 0181 or e-mail LWS@seftoncvs.org.uk.”
Information and support:
· Living Well Sefton is a free service supporting people in Sefton with issues that may be affecting their health and wellbeing.
· Talking Matters Sefton (launched 1 January 2021) provides talking therapies to anyone aged over 16 living in Sefton.