Keeping Me Well - Cardiff and Vale University Hospital

Adult Mental Health Physiotherapy

The adult mental health physiotherapy team works across the health board as part of the multidisciplinary team caring for those with mental ill health. They work across both inpatient and community settings using a person centred approach to bring together both physical and mental aspects of health in order to optimise wellbeing and aid recovery.

What has Physiotherapy got to do with mental health? 

There are two main answers to this:

  1. Those suffering with long term mental illness are often at greater risk of developing physical health problems such as cardiovascular disease. 
  2. People who have long term conditions often experience mental health difficulties as a result of their ongoing symptoms. 

In both of these cases having expertise in both physical and mental health can be really helpful to develop a successful management/treatment plan. 

There is also lots of evidence that physical activity and/or exercise has a positive impact on people’s mental health. 

The health benefits of regular exercise are:

  • Improved cardiovascular fitness
  • Improved sleep
  • A positive influence on metabolic syndrome and diabetes
  • Stress relief
  • Improved mood
  • Increased energy and reduced tiredness
  • Reduced anxiety and depression
  • Reduced social isolation 
  • Improves self‐esteem, 
  • Improves cognitive functions and quality of life 

What services are available? 

Anxiety has many physical effects on the body, breathing and heart rates rise, you may experience a dry mouth or trembling. Understanding what is happening inside your body that leads to these changes can be helpful in reducing the distress that they cause. In addition to this physical activity, breathing exercises and general exercise can often be used to help manage these symptoms. The physiotherapists working in the team also have training in acceptance and commitment therapy, motivational interviewing and CBT to allow them to integrate both physical and mental aspects of anxiety.
Keeping Me Well - Cardiff and Vale University Hospital

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