Mental Health & Early Intervention

Mental health is very much in the spotlight at the moment and in particular it seems that young people are presenting with various levels of neuroses.  And often at very young ages.

It would seem that funding cuts will have a huge impact on early intervention which can prevent more complex problems arising and that other agencies, both voluntary and private, will have a part to play in helping young people with managing their own wellbeing, understanding, managing and regulating their own emotions, and ability to self-soothe.

Some disturbing statistics:
• 1 in 10 children and young people aged 5 – 16 suffer from a diagnosable mental health disorder – that is around three children in every class
• Between 1 in every 12 and 1 in 15 children and young people deliberately self-harm
• There has been a big increase in the number of young people being admitted to hospital because of self-harm. Over the last ten years this figure has increased
by 68%
• More than half of all adults with mental health problems were diagnosed in childhood. Less than half were treated appropriately at the time
• Nearly 80,000 children and young people suffer from severe depression
• Over 8,000 children aged under 10 years old suffer from severe depression
• 72% of children in care have behavioural or emotional problems – these are some of the most vulnerable people in our society
• 95% of imprisoned young offenders have a mental health disorder. Many of them are struggling with more than one disorder
• The number of young people aged 15-16 with depression nearly doubled between the 1980s and the 2000s The proportion of young people aged 15-16 with a conduct disorder more than doubled between 1974 and 1999

(Source – http://www.youngminds.org.uk/training_services/policy/mental_health_statistics

Furthermore:
• Boys are more vulnerable than girls; they are also more likely to commit suicide when they are older
• The World Health Organisation predicts a 50 percent rise in the level of child mental disorders by 2020. This would put them in the top five most common
causes of childhood disability, sickness and death
• Inner city children are twice as likely to suffer as rural ones. Black youngsters have the highest rate of any ethnic group
• Anxiety and phobias are among the most common childhood mental health problems
• In a typical primary school, teachers will be dealing with 12 pupils displaying conduct disorder (aggressive, antisocial behaviour), such disorders appearing
between the ages of 5 and 16. A third of affected children also have reading difficulties
• In a typical 250-puil primary school, 4 children will have phobias, 3 will have anxiety disorders, 1 will be seriously depressed, 12 will have serious
behaviour problems and 4 will be hyperactive
• According to Young Minds, many more will be suffering distress that may develop into a diagnosable disorder unless they receive help
(source: TES magazine)

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Government Task Force

Government CYP Mental Health and Wellbeing Task Force

Mental Health is being forced high onto the political agenda and the Children and Young People Mental Health and Wellbeing Taskforce was set up in 2014 to consider ways to make it easier for children, young people, parents and carers to access help and support when needed and to improve how children and young people’s mental health services are organised, commissioned and provided

Key themes emerged bringing together core principles and requirements to create a system that properly supports the emotional wellbeing and mental health of children and young people

The themes:

  • Promoting resilience, prevention and early intervention
  • Improving access to effective support – a system without tiers
  • Care for the most vulnerable
  • Accountability and transparency
  • Developing the workforce

(Source: Taken from the Department of Health and NHS England Future in Mind publication Executive Summary- you can find the whole publication here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/improving-mental-health-services-for-young-people 

Some statutory funding information:

Early Intervention aims to put in place support and services to prevent long-term costly and debilitating consequences.

In 2010 the government’s Early Intervention Grant (EIG) was introduced to support local-authority funded EI services.

From 2013-2014 the EIG is no longer paid as a separate grant, now forming part of the wider central government revenue allocation to local authorities

‘Cuts that Cost: Trends in funding for EI services’ – highlights over the last five years a compound reduction in EIG in Bristol of £62,200,000

The difference in annual EI grant allocation between 2010/11 and 2015/16 is £15,700,000

Nearly £17 billion per year is spent in England and Wales by the state on short-run late intervention, with the largest single items being the costs of children who are taken into care, the consequences of domestic violence and welfare benefits for 18-24 year olds who are not in education, employment of training (NEET)

Late intervention in the area of child protection and safeguarding account for over a third of the total

A small shift from late to early intervention could therefore have a massive impact for individuals and families.

(source – VOSCUR News December 2015)

Government CYP Mental Health and Wellbeing Task Force  versus the Cuts in Statutory Funding

So bearing in mind it is reported that half of those with mental health problems as adults present symptoms by the age of 14, the theme of promoting resilience, prevention and early intervention would seem to be hugely significant for local authorities. I am wondering how this Government CYP Mental Health and Wellbeing Task Force with its recognition of the main issues will transpose into financial support to achieve same?

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Anxiety

Anxiety definition:

a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease about something with an uncertain outcome.

We’ve all experienced anxiety to a degree; nervousness about exams, driving test,  or even a job interview, but when is anxiety more of a problem? Every person is different; what is one persons worry is nothing to another, so it is very difficult to be specific about anxiety, it all depends on how the anxiety symptoms manifest themselves and how they effect each indivdual.

Yes we all get nervous, however does it actually stop you doing something? When anxious, how is it effecting you? Is it causing physical symptoms? Is the anxiety feeling more than the dread or fear of doing something?

Do the symptoms include:

Trouble concentrating?

Feeling tense and jumpy?

Are you constantly anticipating the worst?

Irritability?

Are you constantly watching for signs of danger?

Restlessness?

Feeling as if your mind’s gone blank?

Anxiety not only effects our emotional wellbeing it can also cause physical symptoms which can include:

  • a pounding heart
  • sweating
  • stomach upset or dizziness
  • frequent urination or diarrhea
  • shortness of breath
  • tremors and twitches
  • muscle tension
  • headaches
  • fatigue and/or insomnia
  • and it can often lead to panic attacks.

 

Counselling can help people explore their anxiety in a safe place, for instance, what could be causing it? What makes it worse? and What things can help?

To find an Emotional Therapeutic Counsellor in your area click here.

 

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