Naomi HoldsworthAs the clocks go back on Sunday 31 October, people in Bradford, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven are being encouraged this winter to look after their mental wellbeing, as well as their physical wellbeing, by Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust’s MyWellbeing College.

The team, that provides online support to people experiencing low mood or stress, has put together some simple tips to help people improve their mood and wellbeing as the nights get darker as we head into winter.

Naomi Holdsworth from Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust’s MyWellbeing College said: “While some people love this time of year and revel in the opportunity to cosy up in front of the TV, others can be affected by the darker nights and colder months, which can have a detrimental effect on their mental health and wellbeing. We’ve put together some tips to help boost mood as the weather grows colder.”

The team’s top tips for making sure you stay mentally well this winter are:

  • Taking the darker nights as an opportunity to get active, or exercise from home as winter essentially means that people can start and end their workday an hour earlier.
  • Having a healthy diet; winter can be a great time to introduce healthy stews and soups to your diet – they are rich in vitamins and nutrients that will help your brain to function well and protect your ability to cope with daily life.
  • Getting out in the fresh air and having a walk if able to do so; fresh air, albeit crispier and colder at this time of year, is still great for clearing the mind and getting oxygen into the lungs and brain.
  • Drinking plenty of water.
  • Practicing mindfulness, which means simply being in the here and now. Taking just a few minutes each day to do something like listening to the sound of nature. This will help you keep focused in the present.

For more wellbeing tips, view the team’s video at www.bmywellbeingcollege.nhs.uk or visit the knowledge bank section of the website for lots of free tips and links.

MyWellbeing College is a free NHS service that is run in partnership by Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust and local voluntary and community organisations such as Bradford Counselling Services and the Cellar Trust. It offers learning and support for people that might be feeling low, unable to sleep, anxious or stressed through a range of online courses, links to websites and resources for help.

The MyWellbeing College is open to anyone over the age of 16 who is registered with a GP in Bradford, Wharfedale, Airedale or Craven.

People don’t have to go through their GP to enrol on a course, they can register online at www.bmywellbeingcollege.nhs.uk

For information on all mental health and wellbeing support services in Bradford and Craven and self-help resources and apps, visit www.healthyminds.services.