A woman who attempted to take her own life when she was a teenager wants to change the language around mental health - saying she was previously dismissed as "sensitive".

Tanya Marwaha, from Worthing, says she struggled with her mental health from a young age and attempted suicide when she was 13.

The 21-year-old now tours the country to try and help others.

She wants to end the taboo around the topic.

"I am a survivor of suicide, I have struggled from a young age,” she said.

"I had my first suicide attempt when I was 13 and now I am about to turn 22.

"It has been a long journey but I want to share my experiences to help people.”

Tanya, who is from a south Asian background, said she was always called "sensitive" until the age of 16 when she was diagnosed with depression and anxiety.

She said: "Growing up I was always told how I was very sensitive.

"I have always struggled and I got diagnosed with depression and anxiety at 16 which gave me some answers.

"It has been a journey dealing with suicidal thoughts, for me it has been about finding hope and using those reasons to keep going.

"There is some amazing work going on in the mental health space, but we are just not talking about it."

Tanya is involved with the charity Baton of Hope, which was launched by Mike McCarthy and Steve Phillip who made contact following the deaths of their sons to suicide.

The Baton of Hope campaign, the biggest ever suicide prevention movement in the country, is touring the UK visiting 12 cities in 12 days. It will reach Brighton on Wednesday, July 5, and will start at the Peace Statue at 8am.

Around 90 Brighton people whose lives have been affected by suicide will bear the baton throughout the day.

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) there were 5,583 suicides registered in England and Wales in 2021.

The Argus: Tanya in Glasgow with the Baton of HopeTanya in Glasgow with the Baton of Hope (Image: SWNS)

"We know certain groups are conditioned to behave in a certain way,” said Tanya.

"Men don't talk about things, they keep their feelings inside.

"The south Asian community often focus on religion and following god.

"We know there is so much support nationally and locally, but people don't know how to get there.

"We have our friends map which shows people where they can get help.

"The tour is to spark a national conversation to get people talking about an issue that is so easy to run away from.

"Even though I have been working with the Baton of Hope for a year, I have still had my moments where I have felt suicidal.

"But I know where to go and I know where to speak to."

The baton will make its way through nine more cities before the tour ends in London on July 6, 2023.

Tanya started the tour in Glasgow and will be following the baton on its journey through the UK.

She said: "The tour is going smoothly.

"One of the things I have noticed is that people are united.”