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HIV, mental health & emotional wellbeing

Roger Pebody, Michael Carter

This booklet provides information on emotional wellbeing and mental health for people living with HIV. Emotional difficulties and problems with mental health can affect anybody (research suggests one in every four people in the UK will experience some sort of mental health problem at some point), but living with a long-term illness like HIV can mean that you are more likely to experience mental health problems. There are things you can do to look after your emotional health, and a lot of help available if you do experience problems. Treatment for depression, anxiety and many other mental health problems can be very effective.

  • Emotional wellbeing, mental health and HIV

    Emotional wellbeing and mental health are important for everyone....

  • Emotional wellbeing

    Particular events such as receiving an HIV diagnosis, disclosing that diagnosis, bereavement, the breakdown of a relationship, financial worries or work problems, or dealing with starting HIV treatment...

  • Mental health

    Mental health problems can affect anybody, but it seems that people living with HIV may be more likely than the general population to experience them. The groups most...

  • Professional support

    Everybody will have personal strategies for dealing with their emotional and mental health needs. However, just as people develop physical illness and need to see a health...

  • Mental health problems

    Life involves emotional stresses and strains. Being diagnosed with HIV, and living with it, will at times cause such stresses, and some aspects of your life will become...

  • Treatments for mental health problems

    People living with HIV may also experience other mental health problems, unrelated to their HIV diagnosis, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), personality...

  • HIV treatment side-effects and mental health

    Some anti-HIV drugs can affect your emotional and mental health. Most notably, the non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI) efavirenz (Sustiva, also in the combination pill, Atripla) has...

  • Looking after your emotional and mental health

    There is a lot you can do to look after your own emotional wellbeing and mental health. Take care of yourself: Make sure you get enough to...

  • Supporting somebody with emotional or mental health problems

    As a family member, partner or friend, you can be a very valuable source of support for people experiencing mental health problems. But to provide this...

  • Where to go for emotional and mental health advice and support

    A good place to start would be your HIV clinic. Your HIV doctor should take your mental health as seriously as your physical health. Many of the...

  • Summary

    Emotional and mental health are important issues for people with HIV. People with HIV seem to be more likely to experience a range of emotional and mental...

HIV, mental health & emotional wellbeing

Published December 2014

Last reviewed December 2014

Next review December 2017

Contact NAM to find out more about the scientific research and information used to produce this booklet.

This content was checked for accuracy at the time it was written. It may have been superseded by more recent developments. NAM recommends checking whether this is the most current information when making decisions that may affect your health.
Community Consensus Statement on Access to HIV Treatment and its Use for Prevention

Together, we can make it happen

We can end HIV soon if people have equal access to HIV drugs as treatment and as PrEP, and have free choice over whether to take them.

Launched today, the Community Consensus Statement is a basic set of principles aimed at making sure that happens.

The Community Consensus Statement is a joint initiative of AVAC, EATG, MSMGF, GNP+, HIV i-Base, the International HIV/AIDS Alliance, ITPC and NAM/aidsmap