Welcome to the Havering Talking Therapies Service

We provide a wide range of treatments and services helping those feeling distressed by difficult events in their lives as well as people concerning their mental health.

Our services are confidential, easy to access and available to people living in the London Borough of Havering.


These include: 

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Silvercloud: Online self-help programme using Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)

Mindfulness-based (CBT)

Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)

Counselling for Depression (CFD)

Couples Therapy for Depression 

Behavioural Couples Therapy BCT

Dynamic Interpersonal Therapy (DIT)

Eye Movement Desensitisation & Reprocessing (EMDR)


Accessing the Service

What we provide

We provide Talking Therapies for people over the age of 18 and registered with a GP in the London Borough of Havering. We can help you with issues around feeling anxious, trouble sleeping, emotional pressures, stress and depression. You may be feeling exhausted due to worry, feeling low or even constantly angry. These are things that we can help you with.

We offer Workshops and Groups, Online Videochat using mobile, desktop or tablet, Telephone and Online Treatment (Silvercloud), Face to Face and 1-1 Therapy. We are also providing support for worry, anxiety & low mood in relation to the current COVID-19 pandemic. If you would like any of the above support please self-refer by using our self-referral button, or by contacting the our team on 0300 300 1554 (option 2)

Our range of services are tailored to suit different needs and the type of therapist will be chosen based on the kind of treatment you need.

Therapist you may see:

  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapists (CBT)
  • Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners (PWP)
  • Clinical and counselling psychologists
  • Counsellors


IAPT stands for Improving Access to Psychological Therapies. The principal aim of the IAPT programme  is to offer recommended interventions to clients experiencing common mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. 


A GP, social care or any other health professional can make a referral for you.

For Health Care Professionals, please see form: 


You can also self-refer to us online.   


You can call: 0300 300 1554 Option 2 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm)
Contact via email: haveringtalkingtherapies@nelft.nhs.uk

How to refer yourself
A simple online form is used when you make a self referral. 

To be considered you should be 

  • Registered with a General Practitioner in Havering
  • Over the age of 18
  • Made a referral yourself
  • Had a referal made by a GP or Health Professional


  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Panic Disorder
  • Phobia
  • OCD
  • Health Anxiety
  • Social Anxiety
  • PTSD
  • Stress
  • Loss and Grief
  • Interpersonal difficulties
  • Long term conditions
  • Covid related anxiety and low mood
  • Covid bereavement
  • Long Covid


One of our professional therapists will contact you by phone. We’ll aim to contact you within 2 – 10 days.  The phone call will usually take 30 minutes, however it could be up to 60 minutes. During this telephone discussion we will find out more about the difficulties you’ve been having and check we’re are the right service for you.

Treatment plan

If we’re the best service for you, we’ll talk you through the different options and agree a plan with you, either on the same or the next day . We’ll explain how long your therapy will last and what you’ll need to do.

We’ll put this in writing so you can see what we’ve agreed. You can expect to wait between 2 to 5 months to start treatment, depending on the type of treatment you need and your availability.  On average you would expect to remain in therapy between 6-12 weeks, depending on the treatment option suitable for you and your attendance plan with your therapist.  Some of our counselling approaches are slightly longer than 12 weeks.

At the end of your course of therapy, we would welcome your feedback on how you found the service experienced.  You can also have the option to opt into being a member of our patient service user forum (just ask your therapist at the end of your course of treatment).


After talking to you, the therapist might decide that none of our treatments are right for you. They’ll let you know what to do next.


Don’t self-refer if:

  • You’re already being treated for a mental health problem somewhere else by a different service, doctor or nurse team
  • You have a diagnosis of psychosis, schizophrenia or a personality disorder 
  • You misuse drugs or alcohol
  • You are currently in crisis and require urgent support.
  • Speak to someone in your healthcare team – your GP or health care professional – about how you’re feeling.

If you are in a Crisis

Mental Health DirectIf it is out of office hours or you don’t know who to contact, you should call NELFT Mental Health Direct.

If you live in Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge, Waltham Forest, Essex, Kent & Medway, you can call for mental health help and advice anytime of the day or night. This is a freephone number and callers will not be charged.

(Open to callers based in 4 London boroughs for 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.)

Mental Health Direct: 0800 995 1000


What we can support


Symptoms of Stress
Stress can cause many different symptoms. It might affect how you feel physically, mentally and also how you behave.
It's not always easy to recognise when stress is the reason you're feeling or acting differently.


Physical symptoms

Headaches or dizziness

Muscle tension or pain

Stomach problems

Chest pain or a faster heartbeat

Sexual problems


Mental symptoms

Difficulty concentrating

Struggling to make decisions

Feeling overwhelmed

Constantly worrying

Being forgetful


Changes in behaviour

being irritable and snappy

sleeping too much or too little

eating too much or too little

avoiding certain places or people

drinking or smoking more

Find out more information about stress on the NHS website



Overview of Depression

The symptoms of depression can be complex and vary widely between people. If you're depressed, you may feel sad, hopeless and lose interest in things you used to enjoy.

The symptoms persist for weeks or months and are bad enough to interfere with your work, social life and family life.

The symptoms of depression can be complex and vary widely between people. If you're depressed, you may feel sad, hopeless and lose interest in things you used to enjoy.
The symptoms persist for weeks or months and are bad enough to interfere with your work, social life and family life.


Psychological symptoms
The psychological symptoms of depression include:

continuous low mood or sadness
feeling hopeless and helpless
having low self-esteem
feeling tearful
feeling guilt-ridden
feeling irritable and intolerant of others
having no motivation or interest in things
finding it difficult to make decisions
not getting any enjoyment out of life
feeling anxious or worried
having suicidal thoughts or thoughts of harming yourself

Physical symptoms
The physical symptoms of depression include:

moving or speaking more slowly than usual
changes in appetite or weight (usually decreased, but sometimes increased)
unexplained aches and pains
lack of energy
low sex drive (loss of libido)
changes to your menstrual cycle
disturbed sleep – for example, finding it difficult to fall asleep at night or waking up very early in the morning


Social symptoms
The social symptoms of depression include:

avoiding contact with friends and taking part in fewer social activities
neglecting your hobbies and interests
having difficulties in your home, work or family life

Find out more information about depression and other types on the NHS website




Anxiety is a feeling of unease, such as worry or fear, that can be mild or severe.

Everyone has feelings of anxiety at some point in their life. For example, you may feel worried and anxious about sitting an exam, or having a medical test or job interview.

During times like these, feeling anxious can be perfectly normal.

But some people find it hard to control their worries. Their feelings of anxiety are more constant and can often affect their daily lives.

Anxiety is the main symptom of several conditions, including:

panic disorder
phobias, such as agoraphobia or claustrophobia
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
social anxiety disorder (social phobia)

GAD can cause both psychological (mental) and physical symptoms.

These vary from person to person, but can include:

feeling restless or worried
having trouble concentrating or sleeping
dizziness or heart palpitations

Find out more information about GAD on the NHS website



Panic disorder is an anxiety disorder where you regularly have sudden attacks of panic or fear.

Symptoms of panic disorder

Anxiety is a feeling of unease. It can range from mild to severe, and can include feelings of worry and fear. Panic is the most severe form of anxiety.

Panic attacks
During a panic attack you get a rush of intense mental and physical symptoms. It can come on very quickly and for no apparent reason. A panic attack can be very frightening and distressing.


Symptoms include:

a racing heartbeat
feeling faint
chest pain
shortness of breath
hot flushes
shaky limbs
a choking sensation
numbness or pins and needles
dry mouth
a need to go to the toilet
ringing in your ears
a feeling of dread or a fear of dying
a churning stomach
a tingling in your fingers
feeling like you're not connected to your body

Most panic attacks last between 5 and 20 minutes. Some have been reported to last up to an hour.

The number of attacks you have will depend on how severe your condition is. Some people have attacks once or twice a month, while others have them several times a week.

Find out more information about Panic and Anxiety on the NHS website




Insomnia means you regularly have problems sleeping. It usually gets better by changing your sleeping habits.

Check if you have insomnia
You have insomnia if you regularly:

find it hard to go to sleep
wake up several times during the night
lie awake at night
wake up early and cannot go back to sleep
still feel tired after waking up
find it hard to nap during the day even though you're tired
feel tired and irritable during the day
find it difficult to concentrate during the day because you're tired

What causes Insomnia
The most common causes are:

stress, anxiety or depression
a room that's too hot or cold
uncomfortable beds
alcohol, caffeine or nicotine
recreational drugs like cocaine or ecstasy
jet lag
shift work


Find out more information about Insomnia on the NHS website



Post-traumatic stress disorder

(PTSD) is an anxiety disorder caused by very stressful, frightening or distressing events.


Someone with PTSD often relives the traumatic event through nightmares and flashbacks, and may experience feelings of isolation, irritability and guilt.

They may also have problems sleeping, such as insomnia, and find concentrating difficult.

These symptoms are often severe and persistent enough to have a significant impact on the person's day-to-day life.

Causes of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Any situation that a person finds traumatic can cause PTSD.

These can include:

serious road accidents
violent personal assaults, such as sexual assault, mugging or robbery
serious health problems
childbirth experiences

PTSD can develop immediately after someone experiences a disturbing event, or it can occur weeks, months or even years later.

Find out more information about PTSD on the NHS website



Phobias Overview
A phobia is an overwhelming and debilitating fear of an object, place, situation, feeling or animal.

If a phobia becomes very severe, a person may organise their life around avoiding the thing that's causing them anxiety. As well as restricting their day-to-day life, it can also cause a lot of distress.

Phobia symptoms
A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder. You may not experience any symptoms until you come into contact with the source of your phobia.

But in some cases, even thinking about the source of a phobia can make a person feel anxious or panicky. This is known as anticipatory anxiety.

Symptoms may include:

unsteadiness, dizziness and lightheadedness
increased heart rate or palpitations
shortness of breath
trembling or shaking
an upset stomach

If you do not come into contact with the source of your phobia very often, it may not affect your everyday life.  But if you have a complex phobia, such as agoraphobia, leading a normal life may be very difficult.

Find out more information about Phobias on the NHS website



Social Anxiety Disorder

Social anxiety disorder, also called social phobia, is a long-term and overwhelming fear of social situations. It's a common problem that usually starts during the teenage years. It can be very distressing and have a big impact on your life. For some people it gets better as they get older. But for many people it does not go away on its own without treatment.

It's important to get help if you are having symptoms. There are treatments that can help you manage it.


Symptoms of social anxiety
Social anxiety is more than shyness. It's a fear that does not go away and affects everyday activities, self confidence, relationships and work or school life.

Many people occasionally worry about social situations, but someone with social anxiety feels overly worried before, during and after them.

You may have social anxiety if you:

worry about everyday activities, such as meeting strangers, starting conversations, speaking on the phone, working or shopping

avoid or worry a lot about social activities, such as group conversations, eating with company and parties

always worry about doing something you think is embarrassing, such as blushing, sweating or appearing incompetent

find it difficult to do things when others are watching – you may feel like you're being watched and judged all the time

fear being criticised, avoid eye contact or have low self-esteem

often have symptoms like feeling sick, sweating, trembling or a pounding heartbeat (palpitations)

have panic attacks, where you have an overwhelming sense of fear and anxiety, usually only for a few minutes


Find out more information about Social Phobia on the NHS website



Overview - Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is a common mental health condition where a person has obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours.

OCD can affect men, women and children. Some people start having symptoms early, often around puberty, but it usually starts during early adulthood.

OCD can be distressing and significantly interfere with your life, but treatment can help you keep it under control.


Symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

Symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
If you have OCD, you'll usually experience frequent obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours. 

An obsession is an unwanted and unpleasant thought, image or urge that repeatedly enters your mind, causing feelings of anxiety, disgust or unease.

A compulsion is a repetitive behaviour or mental act that you feel you need to do to temporarily relieve the unpleasant feelings brought on by the obsessive thought.
For example, someone with an obsessive fear of being burgled may feel they need to check all the windows and doors are locked several times before they can leave their house.

Women can sometimes have OCD during pregnancy or after their baby is born. Obsessions may include worrying about harming the baby or not sterilising feeding bottles properly. Compulsions could be things such as repeatedly checking the baby is breathing.

Getting help for obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
People with OCD are often reluctant to seek help because they feel ashamed or embarrassed.

Find out more information about OCDs on the NHS website



Overview - Agoraphobia

Agoraphobia is a fear of being in situations where escape might be difficult or that help wouldn't be available if things go wrong.

Many people assume agoraphobia is simply a fear of open spaces, but it's actually a more complex condition. Someone with agoraphobia may be scared of:

travelling on public transport
visiting a shopping centre
leaving home

If someone with agoraphobia finds themselves in a stressful situation, they'll usually experience the symptoms of a panic attack, such as:

rapid heartbeat
rapid breathing (hyperventilating)
feeling hot and sweaty
feeling sick

They'll avoid situations that cause anxiety and may only leave the house with a friend or partner.

They'll order groceries online rather than going to the supermarket. This change in behaviour is known as avoidance.

Find out more information about Agoraphobia on the NHS website


A Long-Term Condition (or LTC) is a physical health condition for which there is currently no recognised cure. LTCs can be managed through life-style factors and through medical interventions and/or other forms of treatment.

The LTC Group workshops provide you with a toolbox of skills to help you cope better with a broad range of physical and psychological distress. The groups empower participants to pursue positive goals, develop greater acceptance of unchangeable aspects of health and improve quality of life.  

People with LTCs often suffer with not only physical distress but also with psychological distress.

Physical distress:







Muscle aches



Psychological distress:

Low mood

Pessimistic outlook





Lack of interest/ pleasure



Talking Therapy Groups at Havering

At Havering Talking Therapies we have a number of different talking therapy groups you can join, to see our full list of groups and how you can join click here.

Cost of living support

Financial difficulties can impact your mental health, we offer free talking therapy within the London Borough of Havering that you can access by self referring yourself if you are experiencing low mood or aniexty. 

There are many resources you can use to help seek advice if the cost of living crisis is having an impact on your mental health. 

Mental Health and Money 

Mental health and money : Mental Health & Money Advice (mentalhealthandmoneyadvice.org)

Financial Support 

Havering financial advice - Emergency help | Money advice and benefits help | The London Borough Of Havering

Debt advice - CAP UK | CAP Debt Help

Energy bills - Energy advice | The London Borough Of Havering

Housing Support

Homelessness - Duty to refer | Homelessness | The London Borough Of Havering

Rehoming scheme - Housing Moves | London City Hall

Advice - Peabody housing association London | Peabody

Food Banks

Rainham food bank - Rainham Foodbank | Helping Local People in Crisis

Harold Hill food share - Harold Hill | The Salvation Army

Havering food bank - Food Bank | Havering Islamic Cultural Centre (haveringislamiccentre.org.uk)


Patient feedback

Patient 13

'' I enjoyed the Building Resilience group, the group has put me on a good path and I am already looking forward to partitpating in more groups to help control my anxiety. ''

Patient 12 

'' I have recommend the sessions to family members, the therapists are very helpful and approachable. Will be attending more sessions in future. ''

Patient 11

'' Very happy with how quickly I was put into a group, the therapist who ran the group was lovely and was reassuring as I was little nervous about attending my first group. ''

Patient 10

'' The session was interesting and will be continuing talking therapy as I feel like it is really working for me. ''