To celebrate Mental Health Awareness week, we sat down with one of our Mental Health and Wellbeing coaches Krinzia De Rosa to talk to her about what she does, why it’s important and how we approach patient wellbeing. Our Mental Health and Wellbeing Coaches provide patients with a holistic approach to managing their mood, re-gaining confidence and feeling happier in themselves. They focus on improving health related outcomes by working with people to set personalised goals and change their behaviours.

Hi Krinzia, could you give us a little bit of background on your career prior to joining NPC?

I started working for Northumbria Healthcare back in January 2013 as a technical instructor for the Occupational Therapy team which opened my eyes to the world of healthcare. I’ve always been passionate about helping and supporting people and found this role to be very rewarding and fulfilling. Fast forward to 2020 and I found myself being a part of the Public Health team working as a health and wellbeing coach in Northumbria Healthcare’s hospitals. This role covered both patients and staff, working across wards and outpatients. My work involved using behaviour change models and motivational interviewing which was deployed to help people achieve their goals and create positive lifestyle changes.

What drew you to working in Mental Health and Wellbeing?

During my time as a health and wellbeing coach, I grew my knowledge of lifestyle factors that affect our health and wellbeing. This included looking at things like smoking, alcohol, weight management, unhealthy eating, and sleep. By looking closer at these lifestyle factors, it became clear how many of these were linked to mental health issues. This experience led me to want to learn more about our mental health, the impact it can have on people’s day-to-day lives and how I can support people who are struggling.

What do you love about your job?

I think it must be the opportunity to build relationships with patients and support them on their journey. When you work closely with someone over an extended period, you see the impact small changes can have. Watching someone build confidence, boost their self-esteem and grow into the person they always knew they were is an amazing feeling. It’s an incredibly fulfilling job and I get so much satisfaction from my work.

Why is looking after your wellbeing important?

Your wellbeing doesn’t just affect your mental, it can also have an impact on your physical. Making sure you pay mind to your wellbeing gives you the foundations that you can build on to be the best you and achieve your goals. Overall, looking after your wellbeing can help improve all areas of your life. There’s a lot of things in life that you can’t control, but you can do things to influence your wellbeing which will have positive impacts elsewhere.

What are your top tips for boosting your wellbeing?

Each person has different things that boosts their mood and it’s important to figure out what yours are! With that being said, I think there’s some basic tenants that people can apply that generally work across the board:

  • Get outside and be in nature. Take stock of what’s around you and be aware of your environment. Consciously think about what you can see, smell, hear and feel.
  • Move your body! Whether you like hiking, lifting weights, swimming, or something else, exercising makes us feel better.
  • Establishing a good and consistent bedtime routine is really underrated. Helping your body get into a pattern before bed can improve your sleep quality and help you nod off quicker.
  • Learn something new! Whether you want to take up computer programming or knitting, it doesn’t matter. Learning things helps boosts our confidence, remove boredom, and gives us new skills.

Why is integrating wellbeing and mental health care into primary care so important?

Using a holistic approach allows us to find out what matters most to the patient. Improving our wellbeing can have a massive impact on our mental and physical health, and making some small changes to our daily habits can have such a massive impact. Encouraging people to think more about their lifestyle can have far reaching effects across their lives. Improving wellbeing can help reduce symptoms of anxiety, low mood, low motivation, and low self-esteem which is key to addressing other health issues.

Northumbria Primary Care has made a clear commitment to approaching patient care in a holistic way. By providing wellbeing support to patients, we show that we’re serious about helping patients stay healthier for longer in as many ways as possible.

Our Mental Health and Wellbeing Team is just one facet of how NPC supports our patients. To find out more about what we do, how we could benefit your practice and how to get in touch, click here.

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