We all have ups and downs in life but in childhood it can be particularly hard to cope with sad feelings and worries that arise when things are hard or scary. There may be times when your child is unhappy or struggling emotionally. You may notice that they seem low or worried or that their behaviour changes. We may notice that they seem withdrawn or upset at school. If you are worried about your child’s mental health then you are not alone. Many parents and carers have similar worries and stresses . There is good support available from local and national organisations. The sooner you seek help the better for your child and you. The leaflet: Mental health problems in children and young people: guidance for parents and carers provides some useful tips for helping your child plus links to local and national services.
Local services for children & young people
Please talk to us about your concerns, so that we can work together to help your child feel better. You are welcome to speak with your child's teacher, LSA or phase leader in the first instance. If the matter is ongoing, or you feel may need further support or intervention from school, Mrs Mathias (Family Liaison), Mrs Moody (SENDco) will always be happy to listen and keen to help, as will Mr Potter, Mr Commander and Mr Bowman. We will listen to your concerns and talk through possible next steps with you in confidence.
A GP can check any physical symptoms linked to your child’s health and talk with you about their emotional well-being making a referral to a specialist service if necessary.
The School Nurse
The school nurse service can provide advice and support to school-age children and their families for a variety of health related concerns. Anyone can ask to see the school nurse – children, young people, or their parents/carers and you can self-refer via the link below, or we can arrange that for you.
For more information, contact details or to download a copy of the service leaflet click here.
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS)
A free NHS service that assesses and treats 0-18-year olds with emotional, behavioural or mental health difficulties.
Counselling service for young people.
Websites that offer information and advice
The following organisations provide reliable information and advice to help parent/carers to support their child when experiencing emotional difficulties:-
Young Minds - Help for Parents Information about all aspects of child mental health, including a Parent Helpline 0800 802 5544.
You’re Never too Young to Talk Mental Health – A useful leaflet produced by Anna Freud National Centre for parent/carers of primary aged children.
Childline - Lots of information and tips for children of all ages about feelings and difficult situations.
Minded for Families - Free learning resource about mental health for parents and carers.
Happy Maps - Lots of information about health topics including mental health, organised under different age groups i.e under 5’s primary age, secondary age, young adults.
Looking after your own mental health
In order to support your child, you need to stay strong and well yourself. It isn’t easy being a parent or carer especially when you are experiencing problems of your own such as relationship difficulties, money worries, problems with work. Often it helps to talk to someone, so don’t be scared about doing this, with friends, family, your GP or a support service. The following organisations can also offer information and advice to help you.
Talking Therapies - Accessed through G.P or self-referral.
Samaritans - Tel: free 116 123
NHS Choices: moodzone - Helps manage stress, anxiety, depression. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/improve-mental-wellbeing
CALM - Campaign against living miserably
Agencies and services to support parents and carers in vulnerable situations
1 Big Database links to a wide range of useful information for families including Ofsted registered childcare, parenting support, groups, clubs and events.
Rainbow Resource - Signposts to organisations, services, support, activities and groups for children and young people aged 0-25 with additional needs.
Citizens Advice Bristol - Independent charity that provides free, impartial advice and information on a range of issues including housing, employment and debt.