...By Lola Smith for TDPel Media.
Denise Welch, known for her appearances on Loose Women and various soap operas, has opened up about her experiences with depression, revealing that during episodes, she becomes “silent” and can become “almost catatonic.”
During Mental Health Awareness Week, Welch emphasized the importance of recognizing the signs when someone is struggling and urged loved ones to provide support.
Speaking on Good Morning Britain, the 64-year-old actress explained that although talking about mental health is crucial, it is equally essential for those who love and live with individuals experiencing depression to be aware of the signs.
She shared that silence is a common manifestation of her depression, and sudden withdrawal from social interaction and changes in behavior are significant indicators to watch out for.
Welch, who has lived with depression for over 30 years, mentioned that in the past, there were limited options for seeking help, which is why she bravely spoke out about her experiences.
As an ambassador for the mental health charity Mind, she emphasized that even if NHS services are not readily accessible, there are local support services available.
Reflecting on her personal journey, Welch revealed that during severe episodes of depression, she has felt almost immobilized.
The thickness of the depression led to a state resembling Bell’s palsy, a condition characterized by temporary facial weakness or paralysis.
Under such circumstances, suggestions like going for a walk would not have been feasible for her.
Welch also expressed her frustration with the stigma surrounding mental health, emphasizing the need for empathy and support.
She highlighted that many physical illnesses may not be visible but receive greater understanding and sympathy.
Additionally, she called out certain media figures for their lack of support towards mental health issues and stressed the importance of supporting everyone.
Recalling one of her earliest experiences with post-natal depression after giving birth to Matty Healy, lead singer of The 1975, Welch described the terrifying feeling of losing touch with reality.
She shared that the band’s song “She Lays Down” was inspired by her struggles, emphasizing the profound impact that depression had on her mental state.
By shedding light on the silent nature of depression and offering insights into her personal experiences, Denise Welch aims to raise awareness and encourage support for individuals facing mental health challenges.