About Mental Health Treatment

There are various types of treatment options available for those with mental health conditions, ranging from talking therapies to medication.


Understanding Treatments for Mental Health

When looking into treatment options for mental health conditions, it’s important to remember a few things.

Firstly, all treatment options provided by a doctor are in line with what the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends for a certain condition. These guidelines are based on published evidence and expert contributions, as well as real life experiences.

Secondly, what works for one person may not work for another – everyone is different, and everyone responds differently to treatments, so it’s important to work closely with a doctor or psychiatrist to develop a treatment plan that is right for you.


Talking Treatments

Talking treatments provide individuals with regular times to talk about their thoughts, feelings and experiences with a trained professional.

This type of treatment is helpful for people that want to deal with a specific problem, learn how to cope with upsetting memories, or develop helpful coping mechanisms to support with day-to-day life.

Talking treatments include therapy, counselling, psychotherapy, or psychological therapy, and with many different treatment types available in the UK, it’s important to explore all the options available and find the right one for you and your needs.

Red Umbrella - Teaching.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

CBT is often offered to those that are referred for therapy through the NHS. This is a relatively short-term treatment that aims to identify the connection between thoughts, feelings and behaviours, with a goal of helping an individual to develop practical skills to better manage negative patterns.

CBT can be used as treatment for a variety of different mental health conditions; however, it may not be suitable for everyone.

Red Umbrella - In the work place.


Medication for mental conditions is not provide as a cure, but more so to manage symptoms. The medication you are provided will depend on your diagnosis:

  • Antidepressants – commonly prescribed to people experiencing depression. Also anxiety, OCD or eating problems.

  • Antipsychotics – commonly prescribed to those experiencing distressing symptoms of psychosis, schizophrenia, and schizoaffective disorder, as well as cases of severe anxiety. Antipsychotics can also be prescribed to individuals with bipolar disorder to manage symptoms of mania.

  • Sleeping pills and minor tranquilisers – prescribed to help an individual with their sleep, such as individuals with insomnia. Can also be used to help calm severe anxiety.

  • Mood stabilisers – suitable for those that experience extreme mood swings, such as individuals with bipolar disorder. Also used for managing recurrent severe depression.

Many people find that medications work well to lessen symptoms and allow them to cope better at work and at home, however, drugs can also have side effects that can make you feel worse rather than better. They can also be difficult to withdraw from, or cause harm if a higher than recommended dose is taken.  

If you are prescribed any medication, a professional will talk through all the details with you. Also make sure to ask any questions to ensure you are completely comfortable with the proposed prescription before starting.  

Group catch up.

Arts and Creative Therapies

Often in the form of music, painting or dancing, art and creative therapies are used as a way to express yourself in a therapeutic environment, supported by a trained therapist. This kind of therapy is particularly helpful to those that struggle with expressing their thoughts and feelings, or struggle taking openly about their problems.

Meeting with client.

Complementary and Alternative Therapies

Activities such as yoga, medication, aromatherapy, hypnotherapy, herbal remedies and acupuncture have been recognised as a way to manage stress and other common symptoms of mental health conditions.

Whilst there is not concrete clinical evidence to prove the effectiveness of alternative therapies, you may find these work well for you.

If you or someone you know is struggling with a mental health condition or suicidal thoughts and is in need of immediate help, there are resources available: https://www.nhs.uk/mental-health/feelings-symptoms-behaviours/behaviours/help-for-suicidal-thoughts/

Need more in-depth information on different treatment options for mental health conditions?

Please visit the Mind website: https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/mental-health-problems-introduction/treatment-options/

Mental health services and urgent help are available through the NHS and local mental health charities and services: https://www.nhs.uk/nhs-services/mental-health-services/