This year's Mental Health Awareness Week (18-24 May) focuses on body kindness. Dig deeper into mental health problems, wellbeing and ways to alleviate stress with our FREE courses, interactives and articles written by our academic experts.
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A Support Net: Can you help someone in need?
All of us will experience personal challenges, but could you make a positive impact on someone's life? Try our wellbeing interactive 'A Support Net' to see if you can help four people.Take part now ❯A Support Net: Can you help someone in need?
It's well-documented that loneliness can cause depression and have negative effects on health and lifespans, equal to that of smoking. Explore why friends are good for your wellbeing, then invite them round for a catch up - it's important!Read now ❯Why friendships are vital to your wellbeing
Modern life can leave many of us feeling stressed out. Here Dr Mathijs Lucassen offers five tips so that you can relax.Read now ❯Five tips for relaxing during difficult times
Over the past century there has been a radical shift in responses to people who experience mental health problems. In this free course, Making sense of mental health problems, you will learn about how key perspectives in the field have made sense of mental health problems. By directly relating key perspectives to a case study, you will reflect on how the medical perspective, psychological perspective and social need perspective come to make sense of mental ill-health.Learn more ❯Making sense of mental health problems
How do we recognise if a reaction to a stressor has developed into a mental health problem? Here's a five point guide...Read now ❯Do I have mental health problems and should I get some help?
Should we talk about size in therapy? Does your weight impact on your wellbeing? Psychotherapist and OU PhD student, Michelle Oldale, tells us what the research shows...Read now ❯Talking about weight in therapy – Top tips for size affirmative practice
It is time for medical education to take nutrition seriously argues Dr Joyce Cavaye, Senior Lecturer in the School of Health, Wellbeing and Social Care at The Open University.Read now ❯Nutritional psychiatry is the future of mental health treatment
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Workshops on gender diversity – helping us move from insults to inclusion.
How can we tackle the bullying of transgender youth in schools? Can workshops on gender diversity help?Read now ❯Workshops on gender diversity – helping us move from insults to inclusion.
What is it about new technology that is making many of us anxious and stressed? Dr Gini Harrison and Dr Mathijs Lucassen explore the top five stressors:Read now ❯Stress and anxiety in the digital age: The dark side of technology
How can we avoid the stress and anxiety associated with the digital age? Dr Gini Harrison and Dr Mathijs Lucassen give us five tips...Read now ❯How to manage the digital-related stress of technology
This free course, Understanding depression and anxiety, explores the causes of these mental health issues, with a particular focus on stress. You will consider some risk and causal factors for some depression and anxiety disorders, and learn about the biology and psychology behind them.Learn more ❯Understanding depression and anxiety
In this free course, Emotions and emotional disorders, you will learn about some of the disorders related to the feelings of stress, sadness and anxiety including how these disorders are diagnosed, their biological correlates, and evidence of their possible causes.Learn more ❯Emotions and emotional disorders
Although being at work during periods of mental illness can be difficult for those with mental health problems, most people with these difficulties could take paid employment if it were not for numerous barriers in the workplace and the wider community (Centre for Mental Health, 2013). In this free course, Work and mental health, you will look at some of the ways in which employment affects mental health and what can be done to support people in finding and keeping work.Learn more ❯Work and mental health
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What can I do about my mental health when I don’t have the support I need?
What can you do if you're not comfortable talking about mental health issues with your peers? Dr Jonathan Leach and Dr Mathijs Lucassen set out six ways of getting the support you need.Read now ❯What can I do about my mental health when I don’t have the support I need?
Each year thousands of pounds are spent on medications to treat conditions such as anxiety and depression. These medications often have negative side effects. Exercise is an alternative treatment that is low cost and has few side effects. In this free course, Exercise and mental health, we will look at the links between exercise and improved mental health and psychological well-being. This will include consideration of the role of exercise in combating stress, anxiety and depression, and in enhancing mood.Learn more ❯Exercise and mental health
Mindfulness is about focusing on the present moment, whilst at the same time accepting your feelings, thoughts, and body’s sensations. But why does mindfulness matter?Read now ❯Five reasons why you should care about mindfulness
This free course, Mindfulness in mental health and prison settings, introduces the key ideas and practices of mindfulness, describes how it is helping counselling clients and prisoners, and also looks at some of the criticisms mindfulness has received in recent years.Learn more ❯Mindfulness in mental health and prison settings
Can being outside gardening improve our wellbeing? Discover three factors that account for the positive effects of 'green care'.Read now ❯Green care: contact with nature can improve mental health
Take a new and different look at mental health. This free course, Challenging ideas in mental health, invites you to think differently about life's dilemmas by taking account of the views of all concerned, especially people experiencing mental distress. It explores ideas and practice in mental health, and will appeal to a wide range of people.Learn more ❯Challenging ideas in mental health
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Journeying through Wellbeing
Take a journey through Wellbeing and see how factors such as where we grow up, what happens to us, and our physical health, can all impact on our mental health and wellbeing.Take part now ❯Journeying through Wellbeing
What are are they key factors to successful therapy? This series looks at three elements important to producing a positive outcome. Firstly, the therapist and client need to have a good relationship. Secondly, the therapist needs need to be able to give the client their full attention. Finally the therapist needs to look beyond the individual to the social systems around them, such as family and work, which might be where the client's emotional problems come from.Watch now ❯Key Ideas in Therapy
This free advanced level course, Exploring the relationship between anxiety and depression, serves as an introduction to masters level study in neurosciences and mental health. Focusing on anxiety and depression, you will consider key issues concerning diagnosis, causes and interventions, exploring how these conditions relate to each other. You will also explore some of the more contemporary and controversial findings within the field.Learn more ❯Exploring the relationship between anxiety and depression
This free course, Supporting children and young people's wellbeing, looks at some of the broader concerns regarding wellbeing and the idea that children and young people today are increasingly reporting feelings of unhappiness. By completing the activities, you will be introduced to different ways of understanding children and young people’s wellbeing as well as a variety of practices and services that can provide support.Learn more ❯Supporting children and young people's wellbeing
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How do you spot someone who might have depression?
People with experience of depression tell Trust Me, I'm A Doctor's Saleyha Ahsan about the signs of depression to watch out for.Watch now ❯How do you spot someone who might have depression?
This free advanced level course, Exploring anxiety, serves as an introduction to masters level study in neurosciences and mental health. Focusing on anxiety, you will consider key issues concerning diagnosis, causes and interventions. You will also learn how to evaluate news items, and to go behind the headlines and begin to explore some of the more contemporary and controversial findings within the field.Learn more ❯Exploring anxiety
Learn more about mental health with the OU
This degree examines the science behind health. From individual health to global issues like epidemics or the treatment of dementia. You'll study scientific concepts that underpin the function of the human mind and body. Explore the incidence, diagnosis and treatment of disease and disability. And examine the maintenance and improvement of health in different populations. It's particularly relevant if you work in, or aspire to work in, a health-related profession.Learn more ❯BSc (Honours) Health Sciences
As psychology is the study and science of human behaviour, it touches every aspect of our lives. This degree explores key questions around why we do the things we do and how we interact with others. You'll explore how psychologists use research evidence to contribute to debates on forensic science, mental health, relationships, child development, employment and much more. You'll gain knowledge and understanding of different areas of psychology; develop valuable analytical and communication skills; and enhance your ability to work both independently and collaboratively. This will put you in a strong position when it comes to employment opportunities.Learn more ❯BSc (Honours) Psychology