Lighthouse LogoThe Lighthouse Service supports women, birthing persons and support partners in Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin whose mental health has been adversely affected by their birth or maternity experience. They may be experiencing loss, grief or trauma, or have a fear of childbirth.

Is this the right service for me?

women looking into distance holding child on her lapThis service is for women or birthing persons who live in Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin with moderate-severe or complex mental health difficulties associated with loss, grief and trauma directly arising from, or related to, the maternity experience. For example;

  • those who experience PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) following birth trauma
  • service users, their partners and families who have experienced a miscarriage, an ectopic pregnancy, a medical termination, a stillbirth or neonatal death
  • those with a severe fear of childbirth (Tokophobia)

 

What can I expect from the service?

This service is delivered by a multi-agency team made up of;

  • psychologists
  • psychological therapists
  • a specialist midwife
  • a trained peer supporter

man sitting on a sofa looking down at baby lying on his legsThe team work with other health professionals to ensure the service user is given the mental health support that they require. The team also work closely with the local Maternity Voices Partnership who provide feedback and support to shape the service. Families have worked with maternity and mental health professionals to design the service.

The aim is to offer appointments in the most comfortable, supportive environment. This may be online, ensuring easy access and close to home, or face to face in a variety of locations.

The Lighthouse team provides support to the whole family, including support partners and offers care tailored to meet the needs of the individual and the wider family.

We offer talking therapies which aim to build an understanding of each individual's experiences, current difficulties, and possible factors which may affect these. We will work together to identify and plan steps forward for meaningful change. We will draw on a range of evidence-based and trauma-informed psychological approaches. The care provided will be based on each individual's needs and preferences and may include a combination of the following tools and approaches:

  • Two young women, one looking concerned, other with face in hands and eyes closedWe will provide a safe space for you to share your experiences
  • Information about: how the brain and body responds to trauma, the processes of anxiety and different ways of thinking about loss and grief.
  • Working with patterns of thoughts, behaviours, and feelings
  • Considering the ways we relate to ourselves and others
  • Processing traumatic memories with the aim of making them more manageable and reducing distressing feelings
  • Developing resources and strategies for meaningful living
  • Person centred, cognitive behavioural, relational and compassion focused approaches

To complement this, our specialist midwife is able to provide extra support and care, in partnership with the service user's own midwife and the wider Lighthouse team. Our midwife will provide a link between the maternity service and other services involved in mental health care for women, including the local primary care therapy service (IAPT) and the perinatal mental health team.

Our trained peer supporter will bring their own experience to help others. They will bring together people with shared experiences to support each other, whilst providing authentic engagement.

The length and amount of sessions required will be assessed on an individual basis.

 

woman sitting on the floor holding her knees with a baby in a cot behind herHow can I be referred to the service?

Anyone who feels they need support around their mental health during pregnancy or soon after birth is encouraged to discuss this with their midwife, health visitor or GP who can refer into the specialist team if required. The service can also offer support pre-pregnancy where a woman or birthing person's previous experience or current anxieties may be affecting their mental wellbeing.

 

Information for Professionals

head and shoulders picture of a man holding a baby, their heads touching

Referrals must come from health professionals working within Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin (such as Midwives, GP's, Obstetricians, Health Visitors, Nurses).

Referrals can be made via the referral form and sent to Lighthouse@mpft.nhs.uk

Should you have any questions about the service, how to complete the referral form or would like to discuss a service user who is outside our criteria who may benefit from our service, then please contact us via our email address.

What happens next?

Once a referral has been sent into the team the referrer will be invited to attend our weekly Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) meeting to discuss the referral. The aim of this MDT meeting is to consider each client's needs and who may be best placed to support them, whether this is the Lighthouse team or another service.

If suitability of the service is agreed, each client will then be offered a choice of communication options to find what best suits their needs. We are able to offer a choice of individual or joint appointments to best meet the needs of each referral.

 

Useful links and resources

Maternal Mental Health Service (Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin) Contact Details