MINDing Me

World Mental Health Day

10th October 2020

MINDing Me is a mental wellbeing resource for individuals living with spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus and their parents/carers. Mental wellbeing refers to our cognitive, behavioural, and emotional state of mind which is the basis of how we think, feel, and behave.


Minding Me can support you with the following:


  • Understanding mental health problems

  • Services available across Ireland and national organisations that support people experiencing mental health difficulties

  • Supports from Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland (SBHI)

  • Online supports

  • Helplines/text services

  • Useful links


The information here is for use as a resource only. If you require medical attention, please contact your GP.

The most common mental health issues are:


  • Depression.

  • Generalised Anxiety Disorder.

  • Panic Disorder.

  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder.

  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.


What is depression?

Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Also known as major depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects how you feel, think, and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems.    


What is generalised anxiety disorder?

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) is characterized by persistent and excessive worry about several different things. People with GAD may anticipate disaster and may be overly concerned about money, health, family, work, or other issues. Individuals with GAD find it difficult to control their worry.       


What is panic disorder?

Panic Disorder is an anxiety disorder where you regularly have sudden attacks of panic or fear. Everyone experiences feelings of anxiety and panic at certain times. It is a natural response to stressful or dangerous situations.


What is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder?

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a common, chronic, and long-lasting disorder in which a person has uncontrollable, reoccurring thoughts (obsessions) and/or behaviours (compulsions) that he or she feels the urge to repeat over and over.


What is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a disorder that develops in some people who have experienced a shocking, scary, or dangerous event. It is natural to feel afraid during and after a traumatic situation.

Support services

Carlow • Kilkenny • Tipperary

Waterford • Wexford

Image by Matteo Grando

Cavan • Louth • Meath • North Dublin

Image by Abbe Colgan

Donegal • Galway • Mayo

Roscommon • Sligo

Image by Dan Nistor

North Dublin odd postcodes • Kildare

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Westmeath • Longford • Laois • Offaly

Image by Conor Luddy

SBHI Support: Better Together

The Facebook-based service is a peer-lead, online 1-to-1 emotional and practical support service via messenger to those living with spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus in Ireland. The initiative aims to foster an environment whereby:

  • Individuals living with spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus who have overcome similar life challenges can pass on their experiences to others seeking advice.

  • There is an opportunity for 1-to-1 communication with the goal of forming personal relationships and promoting peer culture.


The Better Together Support Service is available from Monday – Friday, 1pm - 7pm. Please click here to access the page. 

Online supports


Thinking tips



Healthy eating



Stress explained



Controlled breathing



Problem solving



Self-care plan



Youth programmes

The mental health youth programme is coordinated by Lisa Fox - Lisa can be contacted at: lisa.fox@sjog.ie


 Online training


Counselling Helplines/Text lines

  • Free 24-Hour Text Service is a new text-based mental health service funded by the HSE has launched. ‘50808’ is a free 24/7 text service, providing everything from a calming chat to immediate support for people experiencing a mental health or emotional crisis. 


  • Family Carers Ireland is offering family carers free counselling sessions.
    As a carer, there are times when mental health and emotional well-being may be challenged due to a combination of the demands of a caring role, and the additional worries of the COVID-19 pandemic. Family Carers Ireland offer help to family carers, as they believe no one should have to care alone. They have developed a free, short-term online and phone counselling service for family carers, and will connect carers with a qualified counsellor from a panel of approved professionals. The service can be accessed through the link below:
     - National Freephone Careline on 1800 24 07 24.


  • MyMind is now delivering free online counselling appointments for people all over Ireland. If you have been directly affected by COVID-19, you may be eligible. The main mental health issues include difficulties arising from unemployment, bereavement, social isolation/cocooning, illness, stress, depression, anxiety, addiction, or domestic violence: https://mymind.org/covid-19-project



  • Helplink Mental Health offer free low-cost online counselling services and educational resources. Visit: helplink.ie

  • Samaritans provide emotional support to anyone in distress or struggling to cope. Freephone: 116 123 every day, 24 hours a day. Email: jo@samaritans.ie

  • Pieta House is a telephone and text-based support counselling service for people who are suicidal or engaging in self-harm. Freephone 1800 247 247 every day, 24 hours a day. Text HELP to 51444 - standard message rates apply. Visit: pieta.ie

  • Aware offers information and support to anyone over 18 on issues relating to mood or the mood of a friend or family member who is experiencing depression or bipolar. You can access the 'Support and Self Care Peer Group' for people experiencing anxiety, mild to moderate depression, bipolar disorder, mood-related conditions. Freephone support line: 1800 80 48 48 10am to 10pm every day. Email: supportmail@aware.ie. Visit: aware.ie

  • GROW Mental Health Recovery is an information line available at: 1890 474 474. There is a six-week guide on coping with COVID-19, consisting of podcasts, practical resources and information. Visit grow.ie. Email: info@grow.ie

Mobile Apps

  • PTSD Coach - Free app available on the App Store/Google Play.


  • Mindshift (by Anxiety Canada) - MindShift CBT teaches about anxiety, helping users to engage in healthy thinking and to take action. Users check in each day to track their anxiety and work with tools in the app. Get it in the App Store or on Google Play

  • Headspace - A well-known mobile app that teaches meditation and easy to use mindfulness skills. Map your journey and track your progress and ‘buddy up’ with friends and motivate each other. Get it on the App Store or on Google Play.

  • Clear Fear - For teenage mental health charity Stem4. The app uses CBT to focus on learning to reduce the physical responses to threat by learning to breathe, relax and be mindful as well as changing thoughts and behaviours and releasing emotions. You can personalise the app and track your progress. Get it on the App Store or on Google Play


  • The Black Dog

  • Normalising Conversation about Mental Health

Useful tools


Starting the conversation - https://www.mhfaireland.ie/images/documents/Starting%20the%20conversation_A4%20NEW%20Logo.pdf


Self-Care Wheel https://www.mhfaireland.ie/images/documents/MHFAmeitheal_The_Self-Care_Wheel.pdf


Progressive muscle relaxation - https://www.mhfaireland.ie/images/documents/Progressive_Muscle_Relaxation_1.png


The coping wellness toolboxhttps://www.mhfaireland.ie/images/documents/The_Coping_-Wellness_Toolbox_1.pdf


Help with sleep - https://www.mhfaireland.ie/images/documents/SleepHygieneA4.pdf


Useful links

Mental Health Resources from MHFAI - https://www.mhfaireland.ie/resources


HSE - https://www2.hse.ie/mental-health/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIoMvCgMSV6wIVh63tCh2tHggjEAAYASAAEgLRhPD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds



Helpguide - is a non-profit mental health and wellness website. Our mission is to provide empowering, evidence-based information that you can use to help yourself and your loved ones. https://www.helpguide.org/

How to Support somebody with their mental healthhttps://www.mind.org.uk/media-a/4806/how-to-support-staff-who-are-experiencing-a-mental-health-problem_wales_v2.pdf

Considerations when providing mental health first aid to an adolescent


Jigsaw: Resources for parents

Please click here to access this resource





Happiness Trap by Russ Harris


Mindfulness and relaxation

Mindfulness and relaxation resource: http://beaumont.ie/marc

If you need support, we are here to help. Please contact us at:

e: info@sbhi.ie

t: 01 457 2329


Here's an easy way for you to contact your TD so that we can see real, lasting change start to happen...


We always need volunteers to support our activities and fundraisers to keep our service going.

To get involved please fill in the form here...


We are Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland (SBHI). We are the national organisation for everybody living with spina bifida and/or hydrocephalus across Ireland. The Equality Now website is the hub for our campaigning and advocacy activities. Thank you for visiting and please to get in touch if you need more assistance.


You can find out more at: www.sbhi.ie

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T: 01 457 2329

E: info@sbhi.ie

© 2018 SBHI

Reg. Charity No. 20009366