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How Claro Supports Our Client’s Mental Health

We’ve come a long way in the understanding and treatment of mental health and have been discovering the best ways to support those living with different conditions.

Three students sit on one side of a table studying. They are looking down at a notebook

But there’s always more we can do to continue to educate ourselves on each condition and how to best work with our clients.

Mental illness is a general term for a group of illnesses that may include symptoms that can affect a person’s thinking, perceptions, mood, or behaviour. Mental illness can make it difficult for someone to cope with work, relationships, and other demands. The relationship between stress and mental illness is complex, but it is known that stress can worsen an episode of mental illness. Most people can manage their mental illness with medication, counselling, or both. As part of our services we account for and help treat our client’s mental health by improving wellbeing and working alongside other health professionals to ensure a well rounded care plan.

The World Health Organisation (2022 a) defines health as ‘… a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity’. When thinking about mental health this means that it is more than just the absence of mental disorders or disabilities. It is ‘a state of wellbeing in which an individual realises their own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.’ For humans to think, emote, interact with each other, earn a living, and to enjoy life we need to promote, protect ,and restore our mental health.

Despite having an improved understanding of the importance of mental health, mental health conditions are increasing globally (The World Health Organisation 2022b). Depression is now one of the leading causes of disability, and suicide the second leading cause of death among 15 – 29 year olds. This is a sad statistic, so let’s review the different types and how at Claro we can help improve wellbeing.

Different Mental Health Conditions

Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety disorders are a group of mental health disorders that include generalised anxiety disorders, social phobias, specific phobias (for example, agoraphobia and claustrophobia), panic disorders, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and post-traumatic stress disorder. Untreated, anxiety disorders can lead to significant impairment in people’s daily lives.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder. Obsessions are recurrent thoughts, images, or impulses that are intrusive and unwanted. Compulsions are time-consuming and distressing repetitive rituals. Treatments include cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) and medications.

Bipolar Affective Disorder
Bipolar affective disorder is a type of mood disorder, previously referred to as ‘manic depression’. A person with bipolar disorder experiences episodes of mania (elation) and depression. The person may or may not experience psychotic symptoms. The exact cause is unknown, but a genetic predisposition has been clearly established. Environmental stressors can also trigger episodes.

Depression is a mood disorder characterised by lowering of mood, loss of interest and enjoyment, and reduced energy. It is more than just feeling sad. There are different types and symptoms and there are varying levels of severity and symptoms related to depression. Symptoms of depression can lead to increased risk of suicidal thoughts or behaviours.

Dissociation And Dissociative Disorders
Dissociation is a mental process where a person disconnects from their thoughts, feelings, memories, or sense of identity. Dissociative disorders include dissociative amnesia, dissociative fugue, depersonalisation disorder, and dissociative identity disorder.

Eating Disorders
Eating disorders include anorexia, bulimia nervosa, and other binge eating disorders. Eating disorders affect all genders and can have serious psychological and physical consequences.

Paranoia is the irrational and persistent feeling that people are ‘out to get you’. Paranoia may be a symptom of conditions including paranoid personality disorder, delusional (paranoid) disorder and schizophrenia. Treatment for paranoia include medications and psychological support.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that can develop as a response to people who have experienced any traumatic event. This can be a car or other serious accident, physical or sexual assault, war-related events or torture, or natural disasters such as bushfires or floods.

People affected by psychosis can experience delusions, hallucinations and confused thinking. Psychosis can occur in a number of mental illnesses, including drug-induced psychosis, schizophrenia, and mood disorders. Medication and psychological support can relieve, or even eliminate, psychotic symptoms.

Schizophrenia is a complex psychotic disorder characterised by disruptions to thinking and emotions, and a distorted perception of reality. Symptoms of schizophrenia vary widely but may include hallucinations, delusions, thought disorder, social withdrawal, lack of motivation, and impaired thinking and memory. People with schizophrenia have a high risk of suicide. Schizophrenia is not a split personality.

What We Can Do For Ourselves And Our Clients

We feel passionately about supporting our clients with all their specific needs. The best way to a high quality of life is to improve wellbeing for our clients. But what is wellbeing?

Wellbeing is a way of improving our lives, of staying resilient, building social support and self-efficacy, and helping us to cope with difficult times.

It is a positive outcome that is meaningful for people and informs one that people perceive they are thriving in many areas of their lives. It combines several elements, including considering how we:

  • Cultivate meaning and good relationships
  • Use our strengths
  • Contribute to a ‘greater’ cause
  • Find pleasure in losing ourselves in things we find challenging and enjoyable

It is about purpose and meaning, of being a part of something bigger than yourself. It explores the satisfaction we find in our social connections and when we accomplish things.

Having a strong sense of wellbeing contributes to good mental health. It helps to protect us from feelings of hopelessness and depression, offering protection for our mental health. Mental health is not merely the absence of mental illness rather it is a state of overall wellbeing.

How is Wellbeing Measured?
Wellbeing is measured through self-reporting as it is a subjective state of being. There are many instruments used to measure wellbeing which are used for different purposes i.e. for public policy purposes, for clinical outcomes, population health outcomes, and more.

In general, wellbeing is related to:

  • Good health
  • Positive social relationships
  • Availability and access to basic resources i.e. housing, income etc.

Looking After Mental Health And Wellbeing

At Claro, we help our clients in a number of ways. Whether that be constructing strategies to help with routines, accessing services, or encouraging mindfulness and positive interactions.

  • Practising mindfulness

For both ourselves and our clients, we might not be able to change some of the things that are happening in our lives, but we can practice how we respond to our experience. A simple way to be mindful is to stop what we are doing for a moment, take three deep breaths and notice what is going on for us (feelings, thoughts, sensations). Once we notice what is happening and what we might need, we can take kind action to help ourselves. We aim to encourage this reflection and create time spaces for it.

  • Fostering connections

Connecting with loved ones is incredibly important in protecting mental wellbeing and creating the feeling of a safety net during difficult times. If a client is sadly unable to reach their friends and family we are able to organise times for support workers to spend time with our clients whether it be heading to a local cafe for some coffee or lending an ear to listen at home.

  • Spending time in nature

Spending time in a ‘green space’ can reduce stress levels. We are able to devise strategies and create time for our clients to spend time outdoors. Possible assistance can include a support worker to be with them, transportation to local parks, or construction of ramps and handrails to assist entering and exiting their home.

  • Nutrition

Eating well is important as it provides essential nutrients and energy to get through the day; keeps your immune system strong for fighting infections; helps promote better sleep; improves concentration; and can reduce stress. We connect clients with Dietitians who assess their needs and provide tailored plans to ensure they are receiving all the nutrition they need.

  • Sleep hygiene

Sleeping well makes us feel better, more alert, energetic, and better able to concentrate and perform our daily tasks. We offer overnight assistance and after hours services to ensure round the clock care and peace of mind during the night time.

  • Implementing self-care strategies

Taking time to take good care of yourself and engage in a range of self-care activities is essential to protect your mental wellbeing. We can assist clients in engaging in healthy activities they enjoy and find relaxing. We can provide transportation, connect with local groups, or provide tools and assistance in completing favourite hobbies.

  • Accessing services and support

We are able to connect our clients to a range of services and support they need to improve their wellbeing and quality of life. Whether that be providing access to a social group, or to health services such as dietetics, physiotherapy, or occupational therapy.

We are passionate about helping our clients and ensuring they have access to all the support they need. If you think you or a loved one could benefit from our services call us on 1300 303 770, or learn more about what we offer on our website.

If you need someone to talk to:
Lifeline13 11 14
Beyond Blue1300 224 636

World Health Organisation 2022a, ‘Mental health: strengthening our response’, World Health Organisation website,

World Health Organisation 2022b, ‘Mental health’, World Health Organisation website,

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