An introduction to mental ill health

Mental ill health is a term used to describe a range of conditions that can impact a person’s mood, behaviour and ability to cope with everyday situations. These can include common conditions such depression and anxiety as well as less common conditions such as schizophrenia and borderline personality disorder.

Mental ill health can impact anybody at any time. Each year one in four people will experience a mental health issue and the most common conditions are anxiety and depression. On average one or two people in 100 will experience a severe mental illness.

The fear of stigma can act as barrier to people seeking support they desperately need.

Caring for someone with mental ill health

Caring for someone with a mental health issue can be demanding. There are services available locally and nationally that can help you as a Carer to cope with caring for someone with a mental ill health as well as to better understand the condition.

Derbyshire Adult Carer Support Service

Derbyshire Carers Association have a variety of support services that have been designed to assist Carers with the practical, physical and emotional impact of care giving.  We can help you create a support plan and prepare for the future by connecting you to relevant services and giving you choice and control over the support you receive. 

Derbyshire Mental Health Helpline and Support Service

The Derbyshire Mental Health Helpline and Support Service is a Freephone service available to everyone living in Derbyshire - both young people and adults. It is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

If you or your loved one are experiencing distress or anxiety, or feeling that you cannot cope, call us on 0800 028 0077 for support over the phone. That support could be about your mental health but you can also talk through practical issues that may be causing concern. 

In addition, if the helpline team feel you would benefit from some face-to-face support, you may be invited to our ‘safe haven’. Here you can continue to discuss your problems in a calm, welcoming environment with people who understand what you're going through. 

Derbyshire Healthcare Foundation Trust

Derbyshire Healthcare Foundation Trust offer support services for people with mental health issues. They also have advice and information for mental health Carers, including information about the Triangle of Care.

Derbyshire Mental Health Peer Support Forum for Carers

Mental health carer forums offer support to anyone who is caring for someone with a mental health problem. Group members all have experience of looking after someone with mental ill health and provide help, support and information to each other. New members are always welcome. There are two forums that cover Derbyshire:

Derby City and South Derbyshire Mental Health Carers Forum Tel: Sandra: 07779 107087 When & Where: Third Friday of each month 11.30am – 2pm, The Oddfellows Hall, 32 Charnwood Street, Derby, DE1 2GU forum website

Mental Health Carers Community: Chesterfield & North Derbyshire Contact the forum on: Tel: 07730 526219 Email: When & Where: Last Wed every month. 10am-1pm, St Thomas Centre (behind St Thomas Church) Chatsworth Road, Brampton, Chesterfield S40 3AW


What to do if the person you care for is in crisis

If you feel like the person you care for is unable to manage their symptoms and you feel unsafe, you should contact your GP or NHS 111 if out-of-hours. For immediate, life-threatening emergencies, call tel: 999.

If you, or someone you care about, is experiencing mental ill health and is in a crisis or emergency situation, the following organisations can help:

  • The person you care for's GP - if possible your first point of contact should be their GP, as they will know their medical history and will decide the best action to take.
  • If a health or social care professional (a care co-ordinator or key worker) has given you a specific phone number to call when you are concerned about the person you care for's condition, continue to use that number.
  • Adult Care - during office hours Call Derbyshire on tel: 01629 533190 - the call centre is open between 8am to 8pm on Monday to Friday, and 9:30am to 4:30pm on Saturday to provide you with a speedy and direct response.
  • Adult Care Out of Hours - in an emergency outside of normal office hours, call the Emergency Duty Team on tel: 01629 532600.


When you're experiencing a mental health problem, supportive and reliable information can change your life. That's what Mind do. They empower people to understand their mental health and the choices available to them through the following:

  • Infoline, which offers confidential help for the price of a local call.
  • Legal Line, which provides information on mental health related law to the public, service users, family members, carers, mental health professionals and mental health advocates

Get the latest news and information for Carers – sign up to our newsletter

Newsletter Sign Up