Whether you're a child or young person and struggling with how you're feeling or you're a parent or carer worried about a child, you're not alone and there is support available.
What are children and young people's mental health services?
Children and young people's mental health services are a range of support services available to children and young people. They are usually delivered or funded by the NHS.
They will be different depending on where you live but can include:
- mental health support teams (MHSTs) in schools and colleges
- NHS-funded services from local mental health organisations, such as charities and social enterprises
- NHS services - you may hear these called children and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS)
Services are usually for anyone under 18. You may be able to use some services up to the age of 25.
What can I get support for?
Children and young people's mental health services cover a wide range of mental health needs, including support to:
- manage feelings, such as low mood (depression) and anxiety
- manage behaviours, such as eating disorders and self-harm
- cope with the impact of difficult things in your life, such as losing a loved one or bullying
- manage experiences you may have, such as seeing or hearing things that are not real
What type of support is available?
Children and young people's mental health services offer advice and support including:
- self-help support and advice, including online guides and apps
- talking therapies, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), counselling and family therapy - these may be offered face-to-face, online, through an app or on the phone
- medicines - these may be offered as well as talking therapies
- support in hospital if you need it
- referral to other services, such as social care, housing, education services, charities and other NHS services
The support available to you will depend on your own mental health needs and what support you want.
Anything you say will be confidential unless services are worried about your safety or the safety of someone else.
Some people find that self-help advice, or 1 or 2 sessions with a mental health professional, can be enough to help them manage their mental and emotional health day-to-day.
Others may need longer-term or more specialist support.
How do I get help from children and young people's mental health services?
A professional such as a GP, teacher, school nurse or social worker can put you in touch with your local children and young people's mental health services.
You can also refer yourself to some services. Find out if you can do this in your area on your local children and young people's mental health services website. Search online for "children and young people's mental health services" and include the county or town you live in.
Find out more about how to get help from children and young people's mental health services.
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