Here’s where you can find mental health support in Edinburgh this winter

A wellbeing guide for World Mental Health Day


Today marks 2020’s World Mental Health Day. This year’s anniversary is especially important in a world that currently presents uniquely tough challenges. Understandably, some people’s psychological wellbeing is strained. Even more concerns arise as we move into the winter months.

About one in three people in the UK suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD). This mental condition is often linked to reduced exposure to sunlight in winter although it can also be experienced in other seasons.

The pandemic has created difficult circumstances all of us are grappling with one day at a time. You are not alone and there is help available for when you might not feel your best.

Here are some resources that might be useful if you experience a downturn in your wellbeing this winter:

Helplines where you can speak to someone about how you feel

The chaplaincy’s listening service is reachable at 0131 650 2595. You can also book appointments via email.

Samaritans offer a 24 hour phone line, reachable if you dial 116 123 (for free). You can also email them confidentially at [email protected]

Anxiety UK has a helpline, reachable at 03444 775 774 to speak to someone or 07537 416 905 to talk over text.

Breathing Space Scotland are reachable for 24 hours a day on weekends and 6pm-2am on weekdays. You can phone them at 0800838587.

Other online resources

The University offers students free access to Together All, a platform where you can share your experiences anonymously with other members. You can sign up for free here.

The Feeling Good app has a positive mental training programme which is used within the NHS.

Silvercloud is a self-help mental wellbeing package based on principles that guide Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

Emergency support through a mental health crisis

You can phone Edinburgh crisis centre for urgent emotional support at 0808 801 0414. You can also request a face to face appointment, subject to availability.

The NHS Lothian mental health assessment service offers a 24 hour service at Royal Edinburgh Hospital and you can call at  0131 537 6000.

Counselling options

Counselling in Communities has reduced rates for students and they’re currently running remote therapy.

Also, BetterHelp is a US based therapy service that matches you to a counsellor that fits your specific needs. You can chat to your counsellor through the app and schedule virtual therapy sessions either using phone or video calls. It is fairly expensive but discounts are available.

The University Advice Place also offers counselling services as well as other resources for students.

This article is not a substitute for mental health support from a professional. It is a guideline with resources and information that may or may not be useful to you

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