More is needed in the north when it comes to mental health according to the Timmins and District Hospital.

Mental health has been a topic circulating local and global media recently with celebrity’s, mental health awareness day and local events in town. Director of Clinical Services Natalie Carle says there are services in Timmins like the Mental Health Unit, Canadian Mental Health Association and South Cochrane Addiction Services, but the region does need more services and access to them. “We don’t have enough family physicians, we don’t have enough psychiatrists, nurses, social workers and this poses a challenge.” Carle adds that these services attempt to recruit people but that is the challenge here in the north.

She says it’s not just the lack of resources that needs to be improved but also connecting services. “Housing as we know is an issue in our community so any added services would be helpful.” Carle says access to other mental health beds would be useful as well. “Often times we run into challenges where our beds are full and people in the region end up having to wait for access to a mental health bed.”

She says mental health is very important because it goes hand-in-hand with physical health. “Studies have shown that one in five people will experience some form of mental health issue in their life.”

Carle says if you are feeling depressed or you think someone is dealing with a lot, the best thing to do is talk about it and seek help. “You often hear the stigma of mental health so it’s important to friends and family.” She says sometimes you have to ask some tough questions like how are you feeling and have you thought about hurting yourself because “it’s okay to ask those questions.”

Carle says if there is a problem the best thing to do is go to your family doctor or just call one of the local services. She says “unfortunately the system is sometimes a little complex so it’s important that when someone’s not feeling well that someone is there to help them along the way.”