What is a learning disability?
- understanding new or complex information
- learning new skills
- coping independently
It is thought that up to 350,000 people have severe learning disabilities. This figure is increasing.
On this page
There are lots of ways we can support you in living with a learning disability.
Our Community Learning Disability Teams (CLDT) provide specialist health care services for people with learning disabilities to enable and support them to participate in daily activities and increase or maintain levels of independence.
We also work closely with GP’s, education, housing, hospitals, community adult, care directorate, children’s services, day centres, mental health services, advocacy and respite services and voluntary services.
Find out more about the team who can help you in the ‘Our teams and services’ section below.
Our teams and services
Where to find us, and which services can help you.
Living with a learning disability
Information for patients and carers on the wider aspects of living with a mental health condition.
Five Ways to Wellbeing
At any given time, 1 in 4 of us will be experiencing a mental health issue. Some of the most common mental health conditions, such as depression, anxiety and stress, can be relieved by following some simple steps called the Five Ways to Wellbeing.
- Connect with people – your family, friends, colleagues and neighbours. Speaking to people over the telephone or online can help, but there’s nothing like being in the company of others to boost your mood.
- Get active – take a walk, go cycling, join a dance class, go swimming or play a game of football. Find an activity that you enjoy and make it a part of your life. Anything that raises your heart rate – even cleaning the house – can help.
- Keep learning – give yourself a sense of achievement and a new confidence. Why not sign up for that cooking course, start learning to play a musical instrument, learn a new language, or figure out how to fix your bike?
- Give – even the smallest act can count – whether it’s a smile, a thank you or a kind word. Larger acts, such as volunteering at your local community centre, can improve your mental wellbeing and help you make new friends.
- Be mindful – be more aware of the present moment, including your feelings and thoughts, your body and the world around you. Some people call this awareness ‘mindfulness’ and it can positively change the way you feel about life and how you approach challenges.
These are proven techniques to help boost your general wellbeing and they are things we can all incorporate into our daily lives. If you want to make your mental health and wellbeing a priority, following these steps is a good place to start.
Our Vocational Services team can help you to find work. Find out more here.
You are entitled to see the information held in your health record. You do not have to tell us why you want to see your records.
If you wish to see a copy of your health record, please ask the person providing your care or write to: Head of Health Records, Rikenel, Montpellier, Gloucester GL1 1LY.
In your letter, give:
- your name
- date of birth
- any other information which would help locate your file
Please note: there may be a charge for this service.
If you think that information in your health records may not be accurate, please notify us in writing.
Our Choice and Medication website helps you make a decision about medication and some treatments. The Trust’s pharmacy service supports staff, service users and carers in achieving safe and effective medicines management. For more information, please visit our Choice and Medication website.
Did you know?
- Smoking is the primary reason for the 10 to 20 year shortened life expectancy for people with a mental health disorder. Smoking causes cancer, cardio vascular disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
- People with mental health conditions consume 42 per cent of all tobacco bought in the UK
- Many think smoking is a mood enhancer – in fact it causes depression, stress and anxiety
- Smokers have a 79 per cent increased risk of being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease
These are just some of the reasons why cutting down or giving up smoking altogether can have a huge impact on improving your health and wellbeing.
How to get help quitting
- If you are one of our service users, ask to speak to a Smokefree Champion or Quit Advisor
- If you live in Gloucestershire, visit hlsglos.org or ring 0800 122 3788
- You can also call the national Smokefree helpline on 0800 022 4332 (Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm, Saturday and Sunday 11am to 5pm)
- GPs can provide advice and prescriptions for nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products and most surgeries have nurses who offer a stop smoking service
- The national Smokefree website includes a wide range of support options and advice
Easy read information
Easy read guides on money – United Response
Easy read leaflets on a range of topics including health issues – Easy Health
Easy read information on lots of health topics – A Picture of Health
Leaflets and downloads
Information for professionals
Notes on services, contacts and treatments for healthcare professionals.
Referral information for Gloucestershire GPs and Healthcare Practitioners
Referral information for Herefordshire GPs and Healthcare Practitioners
Some good ways of communicating with people with complex needs
Mencap offers guidance on good ways to communicate with people with very complex needs
Further help and support
Other organisations who can help or who partner with us.
Our focus is championing people of all ages, whatever their disability, including people with physical disabilities, learning disabilities, sensory impairment and mental ill health. We are a registered charity and user-led organisation, run by people with disabilities for people with disabilities.
News and views
News stories linked to depression and related conditions.
The NHS has today announced that an additional £5 million will fund reviews to improve care for people with a learning disability and committed to renewed national action to tackle serious conditions. The world’s first programme to review the deaths of everyone with a...read more
A special event took place at the Churchdown Centre yesterday to mark a century of learning disability nursing and look at its progression in Gloucestershire and Herefordshire. Inspiration for the event came from the University of the West of England (UWE) which...read more
My role as a Speech and Language Therapist within the Community Learning Disability Team involves me seeing people with swallowing and or communication difficulties. Swallowing difficulties are also known as dysphagia. Typically someone will be referred for a...read more
People with learning disabilities are being urged to sign up to their GP’s learning disability register. It means they will get extra support to access health services and will be called for an annual health check if they are over the age of 14 and have been assessed...read more
We would like to invite carers to attend FREE carer information and support sessions facilitated and delivered by ²gether NHS Foundation Trust, Herefordshire Carers Support and Crossroads Care. These courses are for carers whose cared for are receiving services or...read more
So what does a dietitian working in mental health and learning disabilities do? It is such an interesting and diverse job. In my 7 years in this job I can honestly say I’ve never been bored! This morning I have been giving advice to a family who are trialling an...read more
This week, 19-25 June, is Learning Disability Week and, this year, the event has a focus on employment, including raising awareness of the benefits of employing people with a learning disability. A learning disability affects the way a person understands information...read more
More people than ever before joined us for the ninth annual Big Health Check and Social Care Open Day. The event, at Oxstalls Sports Park, was aimed at helping people with learning disabilities and complex health and physical health needs to stay healthy and active....read more
The ninth annual Big Health Check and Social Care Open Day will take place in Gloucester next week. The event will take place on Wednesday 24 May, at Oxstalls Sports Park from 9:30am - 4pm. The event is aimed at helping people with learning disabilities to stay active...read more
Learning Disability Week Activities in Gloucestershireread more