KeepHealthCare.ORG – Guide launched to help schoolchildren manage mental health
A NEW guide has been launched to help equip young people to manage their mental wellbeing better.
Hampshire Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) have worked with the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Youth Commission to create the simple guide.
The ‘A to Z of coping strategies’ includes 26 ideas, strategies and techniques to help a young person to cope better if they are experiencing stresses and pressures which are making them feel in crisis or at risk of self-harming. Some examples are:
• Activity – do something you enjoy
• Breathe – take deep breaths in and long slow breaths out
• Create – find creative ways to express yourself, for example paint, draw, dance or sing
The guide, which has been produced in collaboration with young people, will be distributed to every primary school in Hampshire to help children aged eight to 11 years to feel better equipped to manage their own emotional and psychological health and wellbeing.
Helen Dove, Innovation and Participation Lead for Hampshire CAMHS, said: “We are really pleased to be able to share this guide with the young people of Hampshire.
“All young people are different and the techniques that work for one person won’t work for another, which is why we are giving them 26 different ideas, so at least one will be the right one for them.
“We know that the strongest urge to self-harm lasts about 15 minutes, so we hope that by using one or some of these strategies, a young person will feel able to get through that period of time, to a point when the urges are more manageable and less upsetting for them.”
Jacob People, 20, who represents the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Youth Commission, said: “Over the past couple of years young people have stated in our Big Conversation that mental health is the biggest issue that needs addressing.
“More and more of them feel that education on mental illness in the early years is detrimental to creating more awareness around this highly stigmatised topic, as well as better health for generations to come.
“We feel the A-Z resource of coping strategies to help those struggling to deal with their difficulties is useful.”
Hampshire CAMHS is provided by Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. To find out more about Hampshire CAMHS, go to their new website www.hampshirecamhs.nhs.uk, or alternatively go to www.sussexpartnership.nhs.uk.
To find out more about the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Youth Commission visit www.hampshire-pcc.gov.uk/youthcommission.