Support for parents with mental health problems

A support group has been launched in Brighton for parents who suffer with mental health issues, in conjunction with UK’s leading postnatal depression charity PANDAS (Pre & Postnatal Depression Advice & Support).

Inspiration and fundraising for the group came from midwives working at Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Left to right: Brighton PANDAS group founders Heidi Wood, Laura McLaren (with her son Otis), and Ali Clifton

Left to right: Brighton PANDAS group founders Heidi Wood, Laura McLaren (with her son Otis), and Ali Clifton

Related stories: Parent support group at Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath to hold last meeting

Incredible work of community NHS staff in Sussex recognised at annual awards ceremony

Nationally between 15-20 per cent of women suffer with a mental illness during or after pregnancy and an estimated one in 10 fathers experience similar issues.

Ali Clifton, a specialist mental health midwife, said: “The PANDAS Support Group offers a fantastic opportunity to meet up with other parents affected by perinatal mental illness.

“Heidi Wood, the PANDAS support group Leader is on hand to provide information about local activities and services, and can offer support and advice.

“By joining a PANDAS Support Group, you can spend time with people who share and understand your experiences.

“It’s an opportunity for you to make friends and talk about your deepest concerns and know that they will be met with acceptance and understanding.”

Following the success of the Brighton group the organisers are looking to set up another group in Mid Sussex.

Brighton PANDAS Support Group runs every Tuesday, from 2.30-4.30pm at Tarner Children’s Centre, babies and toddlers welcome.

Go to facebook.com/groups/PANDASBrighton, call 07969 393569, or email brightonpandas@gmail.com.