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Mental Health & Emotional Wellbeing

Everyone has mental health, just like they have physical health. When mental health is good, people are more likely to feel happy, relaxed and confident as well as feeling good about themselves.  However, everyone has bad days when they might feel a bit down or something happens in their life which upsets and worries them. 

It is just as important to look after your mental health as well as your physical health.  If you have a low mood for a period of time, then it might be useful to talk to someone who will listen, take your concerns seriously, help you to manage your feelings and explore coping strategies.  There is some information below about common issues which cause problematic mental health.

In the Academy we know that young people often need additional support.  We are supported in school by our Wath Mental Health Practitioner, as well as Mental Health Practitioners in the NHS With Me in Mind Team.  If you are worried about your own or a friend’s mental health, speak to a trusted adult or a member of the safeguarding team.  There are some specific resources below but you might also want to refer yourself for an appointment with a CAMHS Practitioner through the E-Clinic App:

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Anxiety and Stress

Anxiety

Most people worry from time to time or feel afraid of being in certain situations; a common situation for young people is worry about exams.  This is usually short-lived and passes when the problem is fixed or the feared event over with.  However, some people feel nervous or panicky for long periods of time and this can affect day-to-day life.  They might then have trouble sleeping, feel tired and irritable, have difficulty concentrating, feel faint, and experience stomach cramps. 

Stress

People feel stressed when they feel under pressure.  For many people, a small amount of pressure can be good as it motivates them to complete tasks, undertake new ventures, revise for exams etc.  However, when people feel under too much pressure they may then feel they are unable to cope.  Everyone reacts to stress differently and has different levels of being able to cope.  When someone isn’t coping they might display a range of emotions and behaviours eg be angry, tearful, sad, withdrawn, self-harm.  

Panic Attacks

Extreme anxiety might result in panic attacks.  These can be unpredictable and last for up to 10 minutes.  When someone has a panic attack they might have difficulty in breathing and feel out of control.  However, panic attacks are not life threatening and the feelings do calm down, but they are a sign that it might be useful to get some help.

You might also find it helpful to visit:

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Bereavement and Loss

Everyone feels differently when someone close to them dies.  How someone feels may depend on the relationship they had with that person when they were still alive and whether it was expected or sudden.  There are a range of emotions which someone may have, including guilt and anger.  Often people worry that there is something wrong with them if they don’t cry; this is perfectly normal. 

As well as bereavement, we all experience various losses during our lives.  This might include things like friends moving away or transition to a new school.  It is common to experience feelings of grief during these times too.

If you feel it would be useful to talk to someone, please speak to a trusted adult or a member of the safeguarding team.

You might also find it helpful to visit:

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Eating Problems

There are times when most people feel uncomfortable in their own bodies.  However, eating disorders are serious mental health conditions and need specialist treatment.  There are range of reasons why someone may develop an eating disorder but it is usually linked to situations that are making them feel unhappy and/or negative body image.  Negative body image occurs when someone perceives their size and shape as being different to how it actually is.  As a result they may feel ashamed, self-conscious and anxious. 

Disordered eating can also happen for many reasons and take many forms, and can resemble an eating disorder in many ways ie skipping meals, dieting and self-induced vomiting but is less severe.  However, someone with disordered eating would also benefit from help and support.

If you feel worried about yourself or a friend then speak to a trusted adult in school or a member of the safeguarding team.

You might also find it helpful to visit:

Image result for BEAT logoImage result for young minds logo      Image result for childline logo        SYEDA The South Yorkshire Eating Disorder Association

               

 

 


Low Mood and Depression

A lot of people talk about feeling depressed when they are down in the dumps but a person with depression will have felt this way for a long period of time.  They are likely to feel sad, lonely, and/or tearful as well as lacking in energy.  They may have little motivation to attend school, join in with social events, complete homework etc.  There are lots of reasons why people become sad or depressed including problematic family relationships, school pressures, friendship issues; there are also lots of different ways depression might affect someone including eating and sleeping patterns, self-harm, feeling suicidal. 

If you feel worried about yourself or a friend then speak to a trusted adult in school or a member of the safeguarding team.

You might also find it helpful to visit:

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SELF HARM

People may self-harm for lots of different reasons eg bullying, friendship issues, problems at home, stresses at school.  It might be that these issues cause someone to have unbearable and overwhelming feelings and they may start to self-harm in an effort to cope, or to express how they are feeling.  People self-harm in different ways including taking drugs, smoking and drinking alcohol, but they might also hurt themselves by cutting, burning and taking tablets.  Often people worry that others will think they are attention seeking and won’t be taken seriously so they try to keep the self-harm secret when in actual fact, there is a lot of support available.

If you feel worried about yourself or a friend then speak to a trusted adult in school or a member of the safeguarding team.

You might also find it helpful to visit:

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Sleep

Everyone has problems sleeping from time to time.  Sometimes it can be hard to fall asleep; at other times people find themselves waking up in the night and can’t always fall back to sleep.  If someone has sleep problems for a long period of time then it can start to affect day-to-day life.  It can affect mood, concentration and affect relationships with friends and family.  Sleep problems can be caused by poor sleep routines , including not relaxing properly before going to bed, but can also be due to problematic mental health eg feeling stressed, anxious or depressed.  It can be good to get help with these problems as this may have the added benefit of improving sleep. 

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Many people have suicidal thoughts at some point, often when they feel sad and alone and can’t imagine feeling any better.  The most important thing is to talk to someone and tell them how you are feeling, so that the right support can be put in place and help you develop healthy coping strategies which help to keep you safe while you start to feel better.

If you feel worried about yourself or a friend then speak to a trusted adult in school or a member of the safeguarding team.

You might also find it helpful to visit:

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Young Carers

You are defined as a young carer if you are under the age of 18 and help to look after a relative with a disability, illness, mental health condition, or a drug or alcohol problem. If you are a young carer you probably look after one of your parents, or care for a brother or sister.

Being a young carer can entail;

  • Doing additional jobs around the home such as cooking, cleaning, helping someone get dressed or move around a room.
  • You may also give a lot of physical help to a brother or sister who is disabled or ill.
  • You may also be providing emotional support for the people you care for.

We understand that this can be a lot for a child to take on, having adult responsibilities can often mean young carers miss out on opportunities that other children have to learn and play. As a result, young carers may struggle educationally, feel isolated and like there is no relief from the pressures at home. It’s important that Young carers know they aren’t alone and that there are services that can support.   If you are a young carer and feel you would like some support, speak to a trusted adult or a member of the safeguarding team.

You might also find it helpful to visit:

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