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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
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NHS support to help students cope with exams

Published: 19/04/2016

For many students across Birmingham, the next few months can be a worrying and stressful time as exam season approaches. Exam stress can usually be successfully self-managed, but there are times when additional help is needed.


At times when things get too much there is no need to try and cope alone as, for all students over the age of 16 and registered with a GP in Birmingham, there is a free NHS talking therapy service available from Birmingham Healthy Minds that can help with the stresses, worries and anxiety associated to the pressures of exams.


Birmingham Healthy Minds support people to learn coping strategies and manage their symptoms using a variety of interventions such as anxiety and stress management courses, Computerised Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (Ccbt), as well as group interventions for self-esteem, assertiveness, mindfulness and one-to-one talking therapies.

Jo Gill, Consultant Clinical Lead for Birmingham Healthy Minds, said: “Each year, we help thousands of people cope with the everyday pressures of life’s ups and downs.


“However, during the exam period, those people who are normally able to cope well with everyday life may find things a little more difficult to manage without specialist support.”


“The service we provide is free and confidential, managed by NHS professionals, and available to anyone aged over 16 who are experiencing mild to moderate mental health problems, such as stress, anxiety, low confidence or self-esteem, low mood and depression, and referral to our services couldn’t be easier.”


Referral to Birmingham Healthy Minds can be made through GPs in Birmingham or there are many options for getting in touch directly with the team by calling 0121 301 2525 (between 9.30am and 4.30pm, Monday to Friday, excluding Bank Holidays), emailing* the team at BHM@bsmhft.nhs.uk, texting** @BHM@ to 60777 or by using the online referral form at www.birminghamhealthyminds.org where there are also many self-help advice booklets to download.


John Short, Chief Executive at Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are aware of the amount of pressure that students are under over the next few months and we are here to provide support and advice that can get through the additional stress, worry and anxiety during this time.


“A variety of interventions can be accessed through the normal referral routes to our services and the team have also opened walk-in centres, at six different locations across Birmingham, which you can access without booking an appointment.
“Saturday and evening clinics are also being held to make it easier than ever to access support at a time and place that is most convenient for you.


“It is sometimes hard to accept that you may need additional help as others around you may appear to be coping so well without it.


“However, I would encourage anyone who is finding things difficult, especially at this time of year, to take that first step and either talk to your GP, or access Birmingham Healthy Minds services directly, for free and confidential support and advice that can assist you through the exam season and beyond.”


Further details on Birmingham Healthy Minds services can be found at www.birminghamhealthyminds.org


*Please be aware that should you choose to email us we cannot guarantee the security of the contents of your email while in transit to us. **By texting us on 60777, you are agreeing for Birmingham Healthy Minds to contact you (who are part of Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust) to receive further information on our service. This will cost you the price of standard rate text message.