Mental health prescribing

What is mental health prescribing?

Mental health refers to our emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing. We all have mental health. Our mental health affects how we think, feel, and act.

Whilst everyone can feel low from time to time, and can be affected by difficult and challenging life events, sometimes people need additional help with their mental health and can be prescribed medication to help manage symptoms.

Examples of these include: benzodiazepines, hypnotics, and antidepressants.

Why focus on mental health prescribing?

Lincolnshire has been identified as a high prescriber of some mental health medicines and some people have been on these for a long time.

We’ve also seen a steady increase in the prescribing of antidepressants since the start of the pandemic. As well as an increase in the use of benzodiazepines to reduce anxiety symptoms and hypnotic drugs which help with sleep.

We need to understand why this might be the case and make people aware of the risks of dependency and addiction, as well as what the alternatives are.

It is really important that medications are prescribed in the right circumstances, regularly reviewed and used appropriately to ensure patients don’t become dependent or have difficulty withdrawing from their use.

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