Books on prescription

New Reading Well Books on Prescription collection 

Read yourself better!

Whilst medication or therapy can be very effective in treating some conditions, people can often be helped by having an appropriate book recommended to them by a health care professional, or help themselves by reading the right 'self help' book.

Look out for the Books on Prescription books in your local library.

See below for the complete Books on Prescription booklist

How to use the Reading Well Books on Prescription books

The Books on Prescription self-help books can be used in different ways:

  • An NHS professional may recommend that you read a Wellbeing book as part of your treatment 
  • You may select a 'Books on Prescription' book independently from the list below, and then work through it yourself at your own pace

As with other self help methods, the reader has to be prepared to put in some effort. The book may guide you to do a self assessment, complete a diary or follow some exercises. Some of the books have diary sheets, activity logs or questionnaires to be completed by the reader. Please do not write in the books. The library staff will photocopy the pages you require free of charge.

What if the 'Books on Prescription' book doesn’t seem to help?

These books can help people to make significant changes in their lives, but they may not work for everyone.

If you are still experiencing difficulties or distress after trying your best with the self-help programme, please contact the NHS professional who recommended the book, or visit your G.P or Practice Nurse. They will give you further advice and support.

More information about Reading Well Books on Prescription

Every library in Bradford district will stock a core list of 30 Reading Well Books on Prescription titles covering issues such as anxiety, depression, phobias, panic attacks, bulimia and sleep problems. (see below for the complete list).The books have been recommended by experts and have been tried and tested and found to be useful. They will be available to borrow by anyone and if necessary can be reserved online, free of charge through the libraries website.

Library membership is open to everyone and is free of charge.

Some people may use the Books on Prescription library books independently as a first step in seeking help. Leaflets are available which lists all the books in the scheme. The “prescription” on the leaflet can be completed by any GP or other mental health professionals such as psychiatrists, psychologists, counsellors, mental health nurses or therapists in order to recommend books as part of treatment , as an alternative to other types of treatment or as support prior to further treatment.

Bradford Libraries is working in partnership with Bradford District Care trust to manage the scheme in the district. Information about the scheme has been sent to all GP practices. Leaflets are also available in libraries.

Nationally this is a joint initiative from the independent charity The Reading Agency and the Society of Chief Librarians, working with local library services. The new scheme is supported by the Royal Colleges of General Practitioners, Nursing and Psychiatrists, the Department of Health through its Improving Access to Psychological Therapies Programme (IAPT), the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies, The British Psychological Society and Mind

Joining the library

To borrow Wellbeing books, you need to join the Library. It is free to join: either call in to your local library or join online. You will just need to bring something with your name and address on it when you first visit the library.

Book list


  • Overcoming Anger and Irritability: A Self-help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques


  • Overcoming Anxiety: A Self-help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques 
  • Overcoming Anxiety, Stress and Panic: A Five Areas Approach 
  • Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway

Binge eating/bulimia

  • Overcoming Binge Eating (first edition) 
  • Getting Better Bit(e) by Bit(e): A Survival Kit for Sufferers of Bulimia Nervosa and Binge Eating Disorders 
  • Overcoming Bulimia Nervosa and Binge Eating: A Self-help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques

Chronic fatigue

  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (second edition) 
  • Overcoming Chronic Fatigue: A Self-help Guide to Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques

Chronic pain

  • Overcoming Chronic Pain: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques


  • Overcoming Depression and Low Mood: A Five Areas Approach (third edition) 
  • Mind Over Mood: Change How You Feel by Changing the Way You Think 
  • Overcoming Depression: A Self-help Guide to Cognitive Behavioural Techniques 2000.

Health Anxiety

  • Overcoming Health Anxiety: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques 
  • An Introduction to Coping with Health Anxiety

Obsessions and compulsions

  • Overcoming Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques 2005 Understanding Obsessions and Compulsions 
  • Break Free from OCD: Overcoming Obsessive Compulsive Disorder with CBT


  • Overcoming Panic and Agoraphobia: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques 
  • Panic Attacks: What They Are, Why They Happen and What You Can Do About Them


  • An Introduction to Coping with Phobias

Relationship problems

  • Overcoming Relationship Problems: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques

Self esteem

  • Overcoming Low Self-esteem: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques 2009 
  • The Feeling Good Handbook - is this Feeling Good - the new mood therapy?

Social phobia

  • Overcoming Social Anxiety and Shyness: A Self-Help Guide Using Cognitive Behavioural Techniques

Sleep problems

  • Overcoming Insomnia and Sleep problems


  • The Relaxation and Stress Reduction Workbook 
  • Manage Your Stress for a Happier Life


  • The Worry Cure: Stop Worrying and Start Living 
  • How to Stop Worrying