Mental Health Problems

We have provided information on a number of mental health problems within this section. This can help tackle some of the myths and stigma surrounding mental health problems but also provide details of where to find out more information or access support in Shetland.

If you are concerned about your own mental health then please contact your GP.  If you require urgent help click here to find contact details.

If you have a specific query regarding mental health that is not covered in this section then contact us or talk to your local GP.

In This Section...


Anxiety is a normal response to stress or danger. If you feel frightened or threatened your body prepares itself for 'fight or flight' mode.

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When we lose someone we love, be it a family member or friend or even a pet, the feelings of loss that we can experience can be shattering. We may feel overwhelmed, helpless, sad, tearful and worried.

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Bipolar disorder used to be known as ‘manic depression’; it is a serious mental illness and involves significant extremes of mood, swinging from extreme highs during ‘mania’ to extreme lows during the depression stage.

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Chairperson of Mind Your Head, Shona Manson


Being depressed is more than just feeling sad or having a low mood. It is not a condition where people can just 'pull themselves together' and get on with things.

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Eating disorders

Eating Disorders not only affect a person physically, but also psychologically and socially too. Most people with an eating disorder also have very low self esteem and poor body image.

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Panic Attacks

A panic attack is a rush of intense psychological and physical symptoms. These symptoms of panic can be frightening and happen suddenly, often for no clear reason.

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Personality disorders

Information and advice on personality disorders and mental health in Shetland.

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Postnatal depression

Having a baby can be a joyful but stressful time. It is quite common for new mothers to go through a brief period of low mood in the initial days following the birth. Post Natal Depression is different as it is a much deeper and longer term depression.

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Dementia is an umbrella term for numerous different physical conditions which affect the brain.

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Seasonal Affective Disorder

Seasonal Affective Disorder is a type of depression which has a seasonal pattern, most commonly experienced during the winter months.

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Schizophrenia is a ‘Psychotic Illness’; this means that the person has difficulty telling the difference between the thoughts in their head and reality.

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Self harm

Self Harm, or self injury as it is sometimes known, is a behaviour in which somebody deliberately sets out to hurt or injure themselves as a way of coping with intensely distressing feelings.

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Money stress

Sometimes it can feel like money disappears. What is there one day can so quickly be gone the next. Worrying about where the money will come from to put dinner on the table or how you will pay your rent can become an unbearable stress and for many that is a stress that we try to manage day in day out.

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Stress is a response in your body & brain which occurs when you believe you are under more pressure than you believe you can cope with.

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Suicide prevention

If you are feeling suicidal it is very important for you to talk to someone and tell them how you are feeling. This could be a family member, a friend, a health professional, a helpline, whoever you feel comfortable talking to. If you are at high risk of killing yourself right now you should contact the emergency services (999) immediately.

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