GPs are recognising that at least half their patients need far more than a pill for every ill. For one woman, singing in a choir proved life-changing. Sarah Stacey reports.
Listening to the lightness and warmth in her voice, it’s hard to believe Arabella Tresilian, 44, has experienced such serious mental health problems that she once feared she was not well enough to look after her two young children. Treatment with medication and talking therapies was at best a BandAid. What finally transformed Arabella’s life was singing in a choir, a panacea enabled by the social prescribing initiative at her GP practice in Bath. GP Dr Michael Dixon describes social prescribing as ‘a radical rethink of medicine, planting health and healing in the heart of the community’..
Social prescribing aims to improve patients’ health holistically by referrals to link workers who spend time with them exploring different non-medical interventions, often provided by voluntary or charity organisations based in the local community. Activities might include music, art, sports, dancing, knitting, walking, group learning, yoga, fishing and cookery among many others. Link workers may also help patients address housing, legal and financial problems.
It is perfectly normal for people to feel tired especially when they are feeling slightly run down and cannot cope with the pace of life. Often, we use the terms tired, fatigue and exhaustion interchangeably for what we are experiencing and yet in medical terms they are very distinct.
Tiredness differs from fatigue in that although you may not feel it, the body still has some energy in reserve which it can tap into in the case of an emergency. The symptoms of tiredness include weakness of the muscles, heaviness, forgetfulness, impatience often leading to irritability. Tiredness is very common especially if you have had a hard day at work, or if you are simply feeling a bit under the weather and have not had the time to relax and recuperate. Most of the time, this can be addressed by resting for a few hours allowing the body to recover. Read More…