When I received a message from a young girl who was experiencing high levels of stress and anxiety to thank me for ‘fixing her’, it got me thinking about mental health in our children and teenagers and how life might have been different for some if they had been given the help, guidance and the skills to cope with what life throws at us.
Young people can experience a wide range of mental health issues and in today’s society our children and young adults have to navigate through a complex and fast changing world, facing challenges and pressures in all aspects of their lives from exams, social media, bullying, family breakups and increasing pressure from media to conform to body image, to name just a few.
Mental health problems affect about 1 in 10 children and young people. They include depression, anxiety and conduct disorder and are often a direct response to what is happening in their lives. That’s 3 children in the average class that have an issue that they need help with. Among teenagers, rates of depression and anxiety have increased by 70% in the past 25 years, particularly since the mid 1980’s and the proportion of 15/16 year olds reporting that they frequently feel anxious or depressed has doubled in the last 30 years, from 1 in 30 to 2 in 30 for boys and 1 in 10 to 2 in ten for girls. Nearly 300,000 young people in Britain have an anxiety disorder. Children with generalised anxiety disorder and those with depression had the most days away from school – a quarter had had more than 15 days absence in the previous term.
Alarmingly, however, 70% of children and young people who experience a mental health problem have not had appropriate interventions at a sufficiently early age
Mental health is just as important as physical health. If you had a broken leg you would visit the doctor, just because you can see it doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Mental health affects all aspects of your wellbeing from cognitive development, social skills, life skills and emotional wellbeing.
There is increasing pressure on our young people today and I believe it is so important that we offer them the skills to be able to cope in this complex and demanding world we live in. With good mental health children can learn to be emotionally resilient, to manage stressful situations, increasing their ability to learn, cognitive development and to develop a healthy perception of self.
The childhood and teenager years are such a crucial time for mental health maturity as this is where patterns are formed and behaviours are set for the future, given the skills at this stage of their development they are much more likely to have good mental health as an adult.
With celebrities like Stephen Fry and Ruby Wax speaking out on their experience with mental health issues there is much greater awareness than there used to be and equally less stigma making it easier for teens to acknowledge their problems. There are many services out there now which offer assistance to young people and hypnosis is one option definitely worth considering.
Hypnosis is a way of learning that has direct access to the unconscious mind where those negative patterns that can cause us distress are held. Through creating this hypnotic state the mind is open and receptive to new thoughts and ideas were healthy positive patterns can be embedded.
Hypnosis can assist in creating positive coping strategies that can ultimately have a lifelong effect allowing for a happier and more fulfilling life.
For more information on hypnosis and how it can help you please get in touch on 07867 746258