Support available if you have a long term health condition
Living with a long-term health condition can affect all aspects of your life. However, there are many sources of support you can access, including health services, social services, the government, and voluntary organisations.
- What is a long-term health condition?
- Mental health conditions
- Brain injury
- Progressive conditions
- Managing your condition
A long-term health condition cannot be cured but the symptoms and complications can usually be controlled with treatment. Examples are:
The most common mental health conditions are depression and anxiety. Treatment will usually include counselling and/or medication which are very effective and have a positive outcome. There are other mental health conditions that may require more intensive intervention such as working with a psychiatrist.
Mind is a charity that provides help and support with mental health disorders and information on where you can find counselling services or specialist help.
VitaMinds provide Talking Therapy services to support local residents in various districts throughout the UK.
A brain injury can be caused by an accident, following a stroke or by a brain tumour.
Headway Bristol provide help and support to people living with a brain injury together with a programme of rehabilitation.
There are other long term health conditions that can get progressively worse over time such as:
If you live with a long-term progressive condition, you may need support to manage your symptoms and your environment. The following articles explain how to:
- make adaptations to your home to allow you to remain independent for longer
- use equipment available to make everyday tasks easier
Discussing your condition with your GP and hospital specialists is a good way of learning about your condition and the treatments available to manage it. Talking to friends and family can also help you to feel supported and to ask for help if you need it.
Other resources which can provide help and advice to manage your condition include:
- the Reading Well service which is usually available through your local library
- the council’s articles on long term conditions and disabilities
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society website
- Terrence Higgins Trust website for HIV support
- Brigstowe website
- Parkinson’s UK website
- Huntington’s Disease Association website
- Alzheimer’s Society website for Dementia support
When you have a long-term condition it’s a good idea to keep working if you are able. It is best to make your employer aware of your condition and to have a discussion with them about any changes you might need in your role.
You can find more information about support for disabled people in the workplace in the following articles:
People with long-term conditions may qualify for a whole range of benefits, tax credits, grants, payments, and concessions. For more information see the council’s webpage on financial support available if you have a disability.