Seafarer Mental Health Awareness

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Taking good care of the mental health of the crew should always be monitored frequently.

How do we know if a person is suffering from mental health problem?

According to AMSA’s Maritime Safety Awareness Bulletin Issue 12 – September 2020, Here are the signs that may indicate that a person is having a mental health problem:

• appears to withdraw, isolates themselves, or seems quieter than usual

• appears distressed

• agitated or irritable

• difficulty managing work or workload

• more argumentative, aggressive, or gets into conflicts

• confused, unusually forgetful, or has trouble concentrating

• behaving in a way that is out of character.

When you see those signs, here are the suggestions that you may do to assist the person experiencing it:

 • spend time with the person

 • offer your assistance and a listening ear, but do not intrude on that person’s privacy. Be mindful that there may sometimes be deeper problems that underlie the initial problem they mention

• help them with any practical arrangements they require

• do not take their emotions personally, as this is probably a part of their reaction

• do not downplay or dismiss their problems. Do not tell them they are ‘lucky the situation isn’t worse’—they probably don’t feel lucky

• help them to re-establish a normal schedule as quickly as possible. If possible, include them in the activities of others

• encourage them to be active and involved

• encourage them to look at what they can manage, rather than just thinking about what they want to avoid.

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Always be alert to your crew’s mental behavior. Maintain a fair and supportive working environment all the time.


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