What Is Mental Health?
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.
Over the course of your life, if you experience mental health problems, your thinking, mood, and behaviour could be affected. Many factors contribute to mental health problems, including:
- Biological factors, such as genes or brain chemistry
- Life experiences, such as trauma or abuse
- Family history of mental health problems
Warning signs to looks look out for:
Not sure if you or someone you know is living with mental health problems? Experiencing one or more of the following feelings or behaviours can be an early warning sign of a problem:
- Eating or sleeping too much or too little
- Pulling away from people and usual activities
- Having low or no energy
- Feeling numb or like nothing matters
- Having unexplained aches and pains
- Feeling helpless or hopeless
- Smoking, drinking, or using drugs more than usual
- Feeling unusually confused, forgetful, on edge, angry, upset, worried, or scared
- Yelling or fighting with family and friends
- Experiencing severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships
- Having persistent thoughts and memories you can’t get out of your head
- Hearing voices or believing things that are not true
- Thinking of harming yourself or others
- Inability to perform daily tasks like taking care of your kids or getting to work or school
All children and young people deserve the best start in life and building strong emotional
resilience is an important element in helping children and young people achieve and succeed. In Bracknell Forest we have strong partnership arrangements which work to deliver the best possible outcomes for children, young people and families.
Children and young people who feel good about themselves and are confident and optimistic about their future will be better equipped, more resilient and able to deal with and adapt to the inevitable stresses that life will set them.
There is strong evidence to support the importance of children making a good start in life. If a child or young person suffers mental ill-health and their condition is not addressed, they are likely to remain unwell through adulthood and go on to develop other harmful physical health conditions too.
Where to go for help
There are a number of services in the area that can help children and young people who are experiencing mental health problems.
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS)
CAMHS provides a specialist mental health service for children and young people.
Community Mental Health Team (CMHT)
CMHT provides a service for individuals including 16 and 17 year olds who are no longer in full time education and who are suffering from mental illness or severe emotional distress.
The CMHT consists of social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, community psychiatric nurses, occupational therapist, community support workers and administrative staff
How to contact these services
It is usually best to discuss any concerns about your mental health with your GP. Your GP may then refer you onto the CMHT. However you can contact CAMHS directly on 01344 352020 or 01344 823200
National Support Services & Helplines
SANE SANEline 0300 304 7000 (6pm-11pm daily)
Samaritans Telephone 116 123
Bracknell Samaritans: 01344 455556
YoungMinds 0808 802 5544
The Mix Free Helpline 0808 808 4994
Berkshire Child Anxiety Clinic 0118 378 8926