Psychological Impact

It is natural for people to go through periods of feeling worried or low, irritated or tired. Being diagnosed and living with a neurological condition can be difficult. Coming to terms with such illness and adapting to the changes that may be required can be hard.

Some common emotional difficulties experienced by people living with a neurological condition include:

Low mood or depression
Worry or anxiety
Frustration, irritation or anger
Sleep problems
It can sometimes be difficult to know why you are feeling this way and what you can do about it. Many people adjust to these changes as they learn more about their own condition and make changes to their life. However sometimes emotional difficulties can persist and interfere with your day to day life. At these times, it is helpful to seek advice and support.

Self Help

Many people like to self-manage their difficulties. If you would like resources that are more specific to your condition, you may find it helpful to contact relevant charities for more information. Our Useful Links page contains links to a number of established organisations. Your hospital specialist or healthcare provider may also know of helpful supports and resources you can use.


If you are concerned that you might be experiencing psychological or emotional difficulties and feel you need support to work through these, then it is important to speak to someone. Your General Practitioner or hospital specialist can explore options for helping you. They may offer to refer you on to specialist services for support. 
If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts or feelings of self-harm then please seek help immediately by contacting your GP or NHS 24 on 111. Services such as the Samaritans and Breathing Space are also available 24 hours a day and provide confidential emotional support.

Psychological therapy within the neuropsychology service

You may be offered psychological therapy from a neuropsychology department. This will be a short number of sessions (generally between 4 and 6) that will focus on the impact that your illness or injury is having on your psychological well-being.

The comments below are from people who have had therapy within a neuropsychology department

How would you describe a therapy session to someone who has never had one?

"A therapy session is for you and it is about you!'s not often you get the opportunity to have time devoted purely to you and your well-being. It's a chance to open up and share as little or as much as you want with someone who has the medical knowledge and experience to guide you towards strategies. You are always in control of what you share but it is surprising how much you want to share when you are there."
" It is hard if you're not used to talking about your feelings, if you are introverted by nature. Once you get going, it is fine." 

Have your therapy sessions been useful?

"The sessions leave me feeling very reflective with lots to think about. It's difficult to break old habits straight away but I do find myself stopping and thinking before launching into a heavy workload. We established activities that I like doing which help me to switch off and relax and I am aiming to build these into my daily routine."
​"It's hard to change. I'm optimistic by nature and I'm sure, in time, I will make changes."

Last Reviewed: 21/10/2015