January 27th marked the first Parent Mental Health Day which encourages the importance of understanding Parents’ mental health.

The awareness day, launched by the charity Stem4, encourages awareness of mental health in parents’, explores the impact it has on families and share thoughts on how to #TipTheBalance towards positive mental health.

Stem4 supports young people to build positive mental health but wants to open up the conversation to parents too.

For many parents, the coronavirus pandemic has made the past few years challenging with circumstances changing all the time. This includes finding little time for themselves whilst juggling working from home with home-schooling.

The aim of the day is to encourage parents and carers to take a moment and reflect on how they can make positive steps to improve their mental health.

Things that you can do to improve your mental health:

  • Physical Activity-As a parent it can be hard to find time to focus on physical activities. However, it can be a great way to improve your mental health and focus on you. Activities range from swimming, yoga or walking can be a great way to boost your mood. You can also do activities at home such as chair-based exercises, stretching and dancing.

To find out more information about home exercises visit:

Choosing an activity | Mind, the mental health charity – help for mental health problems

  • Contacting your support network-Having people outside of the family home who you can talk to or ask for help is a key tool to improving your mental health as a parent. If you don’t have a support network in place, try identifying a couple of people who you could ask for emotional and practical support (e.g. with childcare  or transport).
  • Being organised-A routine is a good way to avoid stress and anxiety on busy mornings. This could be ensuring bags and lunchboxes are packed for school the night before and trying to stick to a bedtime routine.
  • Talk about mental health- By being open and talking about mental health problems we are facing individually; we can start an open conversation and help each other to find a balance.
  • Learning a new Skill or hobby-Learning a new skill or hobby is a good way to unwind and also engage your mind. Somerset is a great place to get engaged with new hobbies in craft shops. You can also get engaged with short courses on the Somerset Skills and Learning and The Skill Toolkit.
  • Finding a quiet and comfortable space- There are many places to relax and unwind around Somerset in local park, scenic countryside and libraries. Take some time to explore and find a place where you can unwind and relax.

For more ideas on how to improve your mental health keep balanced while uncertainty continues, click  Parent Mental Health Day.

More resources are available here:

  • Parent and carer toolkit– A website dedicated to support parents and carers to find the information they need to help with their role of ‘being a parent’. It has common topics that affect families.
  • Every Mind Matters-A website containing expert advice and practical tips to help you look after your mental health and wellbeing, so discover what works for you.
  • Accessible Walks-An article with lots of different ways that you can enjoy the Somerset Countryside with accessible features.
  • Somerset Parent Carer Forum– The forum carries out activities for the benefit of Parent Carers and families of children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) in Somerset. The work is focused on enabling families to have a voice, to have the information to support their children’s needs and enabling families to support each other.
  • ParentlineParentline is a telephone service run by Somerset County Council’s Education Psychology Service aimed at supporting Somerset parents and carers whose children are facing challenges

Paper cut out of family in a families hands