COUNSELLORS have noticed an increasing trend in the number of their clients worrying about Brexit.

More than a quarter of people living in the North East have had their mental health affected by Brexit, according to new research.

The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) found that the decision to leave the European Union has affected mental health of 28 per cent of the people living in the region.

It is one of the lowest figures in the UK above the West Midlands at 27 per cent while the UK average is 33 per cent.

London and Wales were found most likely to have their mental wellbeing hit by Brexit.

The Public Perception Survey, which was conducted by YouGov, also showed large variations in how people’s mental health has been affected by Brexit along age groups, household incomes, social grades and even voting habits.

Andrew Kinder, BACP governor and senior accredited BACP counsellor, said: “Most of us dislike change because of the uncertainty it creates - and there is a lot of uncertainty around Brexit.

“There is uncertainty on whichever side people voted for, whether that is remain or leave.

“Uncertainty can be stressful for people, and it does impact on their wellbeing, and if people have underlying issues as well, this is fuelling it and adding to it.”

The BACP survey found that younger people are less likely to have had their mental health affected by the Brexit process than older people.

A total of 28 per cent of 16 to 24-year-olds agreed that their wellbeing had been affected compared to 37 per cent of those aged 65 and above.

Cate Campbell, accredited BACP member and counsellor, said: “I have seen many clients talking about it, and they have been since the day after the Referendum.

“For people who voted to remain, they don’t feel that they know the world that they have grown up with.

“People who voted to leave feel that what they voted for and hoped for was not being addressed. They feel let down.

“There are people who have lost jobs, or whose jobs have gone abroad, and their opportunities have narrowed, and they are worrying about the effects on their families."

BACP is a professional association for members of UK counselling professions.

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