Energy Bills Impacting Your Mental Health this Blue Monday?
January 15, 2024
Energy bills are on the rise, and it feels like they’re only getting higher because of the cost-of-living crisis. Worrying a lot can harm our mental health, especially in winter when we spend more on heating and we feel the pressure of finances.
As ‘Blue Monday’ approaches in January, considered the saddest day of the year, let’s explore the challenges people are facing and discuss ways to prevent the January Blues from taking a toll on us.
What is Blue Monday?
January 15, known as ‘The Saddest Day of the Year,’ coincides with a period when people are in the process of recovering financially from the expenses of the Christmas season. Colder weather, debt levels, and the general low motivation that people face as they return to normal life all play a part in Blue Monday.
Blue Monday adds pressure, but the real problem is the energy bill crisis that the whole country is facing. The days and nights are getting colder, leading people to use a higher amount of energy to comfortably warm their homes.
We should only consider the day itself, now classified as an awareness day, as a concept. Mental health is an incredibly real battle that people face every day of the year.
Many people enter debt to pay their bills, which is why finances greatly affect mental health.
The Energy Bill Crisis
The energy price cap increased by 54% on April 1st 2023 and has led to an average energy bill of £1,971 for people. However, homes that consume more energy may have even higher bills.
Energy prices increased because of worries about Russia’s gas exports to Western Europe. Prices may also go up during colder months if there is high demand.
The prices will be the same from January to March but may decrease a little in April.
How are Energy Bills Affecting Your Mental Health?
The correlation between energy bills and mental health is evident and it is impacting a lot of lives. People with existing mental health problems experience more stress, while others become depressed and anxious because of rising bills.
When we have to spend more money to heat our homes, our mental health can suffer. This puts households in difficult situations, where they may have to decide between heating their homes or buying food.
Poorer households are more prone to mental health problems. They are also four times more likely to be unable to afford their energy bills. Unfortunately, there is no hope for them to catch up in the near future.
How are Vulnerable People Affected?
Some of the most impacted by the energy crisis are vulnerable people; over 65 and the disabled who are very concerned about the constant rise.
Heating their home considerably less in the winter months.
Two times more likely to have a cold home.
Less likely to afford food.
30% spend less money on visiting family and 20% are left feeling lonely as a result.
How Can You Get Help with Energy Bills?
We understand the difficulties of navigating through this current financial climate, this is why we are here to provide you with all the support you need to make things a bit easier all whilst reducing your carbon footprint.
Energy Advice Helpline
Energy Advice Helpline can provide help to people who are looking to reduce the prices of their energy bills. We also help homes gain access to EC04 funding, allowing them to switch to a more efficient heating system.
We help available grants gain notoriety and guide people towards the help they qualify for. Customers are forwarded to our local installers who will carry out any work. These upgrades will always be free.
The ECO schemes are fully funded by the UK Government and energy companies such as; British Gas, Scottish Power, Edf Energy, SSE, NPower and E.On.
The Government aim to reduce carbon emissions by 100% by 2050. £4 billion has been kept aside until 2026 and it’s vital that people who desperately need this help make the most of it.
ECO4 is a key part of the plan to change homes from inefficient heating to better and money-saving systems.
Homes without gas can get greener energy like solar panels, insulation, and efficient heating systems through the scheme.
Your property and personal circumstances need to meet specific criteria. If successful, your property will then be surveyed allowing the installers to come to the home and make the improvements. The work will be surveyed after completion to see if the improvements are making a difference.
The 1st of February saw the VAT of domestic energy storage systems cut, following an announcement in December last year
February 7, 2024
Energy Advice Helpline is a non-profit Community Interest Company that provides support and advice on rising energy costs. Our goal is to assist people by offering guidance, signposting to other relevant services, and providing information on available options for reducing energy bills and accessing Government support.