We know that when working with children and young people it can sometimes be difficult to know what difficulties they might be experiencing in their life, if they are struggling with mental health or emotional wellbeing, but also to know how to help them to manage these difficulties better. We have put together a list of some of things that they may experience, and some top tips of how these difficulties can be monitored and managed better together.
To make a referral to Hampshire Specialist CAMHS, please download and complete the following referral form.
Have you have looked at the relevant information and advice for the information you are looking for? Have you tried any of the self-help options? Have you accessed support from the suggested Apps, websites and organisations that are listed?
If you are still not able to find the information or support you are seeking, then it might be helpful to speak to a CAMHS clinician. Please contact our Single Point of Access (SPA) number on 0300 304 0050.
Hampshire Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service is an NHS specialist service, provided by Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust for young people aged 5-18 years and their families who are experiencing difficulties with their mental and emotional health. Many young people experience difficulties with their mental health such as anxiety, low mood, trauma, eating difficulties plus many others which can impact on all aspects of life such as education, home life, hobbies and interests, socialising and having fun.
It is important to know that everyone has mental health and that we can all experience tough times and this can cause our mental health to suffer. CAMHS work with young people, their families and other important organisations (such as schools) to achieve the following:
• Assess and diagnose mental health and neurodevelopmental difficulties
• Identify realistic goals or changes
• Identify and build on strengths
• Improve self-esteem and confidence to cope with difficulties
• Learn emotional coping techniques to help manage difficult or upsetting thoughts, feelings, urges or experiences
• Empower the young person to identify, express and communicate their needs, take responsibility for their health and wellbeing and feel confident in knowing where and how to get additional support if necessary
We cannot “cure” mental health difficulties or prevent difficulties ever coming back. Lots of things can impact on our mental health, some of which are beyond anyone’s control. Instead we work with you to help you learn how to manage your difficulties and in many cases overcoming them is absolutely possible. There may also be some difficulties or experiences which CAMHS are not able to provide support for. In these cases we will help you access appropriate help from other organisations and services such as drug and alcohol services and bereavement services plus many others.
Anyone can help a young person to get a referral to CAMHS. The young person themselves, parents or carers, teachers, a health professional (such as a school nurse or GP) or a social worker. There’s also a referral form which can be filled out and emailed to HantsCamhsSpa@nhs.net. You can also call Hampshire CAMHS on 0300 304 0050 (Monday – Friday, 9am-5pm).
We would recommend talking to CAMHS before making a referral so that we can offer advice and guidance and to decide whether CAMHS is the right service to meet your needs. CAMHS may also be able to offer recommendations about other services, organisations and things that may be helpful.
If after receiving a referral it is agreed that it would be helpful for CAMHS to offer an appointment, you will be given a date as soon as possible. Please be aware that there may be a wait for an appointment. If you feel that things are becoming more difficult or more urgent whilst you are waiting for appointment, please contact the Single Point of Access for CAMHS on 0300 304 0050 to let us know.
• At the first appointment we’ll start with introductions and outline what will happen during the appointment. The first appointment may be by telephone or face to face
• We’ll ask the young person to fill in some questionnaires. These help us to understand strengths and any difficulties they might be experiencing
• The clinician will also talk about confidentiality and consent to share information
• The aim of the first appointment is to find out what the young person’s goals are and what they would like to be different
• By the end of the appointment the best way forward will be decided in order to help them reach their goals/recovery
• If you have any questions, worries or concerns please speak to a clinician.
• Following the first appointment, if it is agreed that CAMHS can help, a number of things may happen
• They may be offered a group to attend. We know that for some that groups with other people experiencing similar difficulties are the best support. These will be run by our experienced clinicians
• They may be offered a further period of assessment and intervention by one of our clinicians.
This will depend on many factors including the type of difficulties they are experiencing and their goals. There will be regular reviews of how things are progressing and discussions with the young person and their family about the care we provide. At CAMHS we aim to empower young people to learn and develop skills to help themselves cope and work towards their goals.
Sessions usually last between 50 minutes and one hour. Some sessions are longer depending on the therapy approach being used. You can use as much or as little of your session time as you want.
No, not everyone that comes to CAMHS is prescribed medication. Medication can be helpful for some young people depending on what difficulties they are experiencing.
You might find useful information and guidance about psychiatric medication on this website: www.headmeds.org.uk
If there is an emergency to the young person or someone else is at risk of serious harm, call 999 immediately and tell anyone else who may be near you so they can help.
If the young person is in crisis and do not know what to do, click here.
If it is not an emergency, encourage the young person to find someone to talk to; a parent/ carer or family member, friend or partner, or call the helpline. If they already see someone at CAMHS, they can call after the weekend or the next day to speak with them or someone else in the team.
• Specialist Eating Disorder Team
This team covers the whole of Hampshire and works with young people who have eating disorders and difficulties and their families. Our aim is to see young people as quickly as possible and provide specialist treatment. The team also provides information and guidance for anyone who might be concerned about an eating difficulty. The Specialist Eating Disorder Team can be contacted Monday-Friday 9-5pm on 03003040062.
• i2i (Urgent Assessment and Home Treatment Team)
Our i2i team provide specialist intensive assessment and treatment to young people who are experiencing crisis or who require extra care to try to prevent crises from happening. This service can only be accessed by young people already coming to CAMHS and who have been referred by their CAMHS worker. The team provide urgent assessments and help develop care plans with you, your family, the CAMHS team, school and other agencies (where needed) that aim to keep young people as safe as possible.
• Learning Disability Care
Hampshire CAMHS also offer their services to children and young people with a learning disability, making sure that young people with a learning disability who also have a mental health difficulty can get the help and support they need. Every team in Hampshire CAMHS has a specialist learning disability CAMHS worker who can offer a range of approaches depending on each person’s needs. One of the main approaches used is Positive Behaviour Support. This is an approach to support children and young people when they have behaviours that can be challenging.
We work together to find out why a behaviour may occur, including triggers and outcomes. This helps us to think of strategies to help a young person manage their feelings and helps parents or carers to respond in helpful ways.
Further information can be found at: www.challengingbehaviour.org.uk
• Youth Offending Team and Forensic CAMHS
The Youth Offending Team (YOT) is a service provided by Children’s Services for young people who are involved in the Criminal Justice System. CAMHS provides specialist assessments and ways to help young people who have been involved in crime and are working with YOT. These CAMHS clinicians work within the YOT teams and alongside the YOT workers.
Forensic CAMHS is a specialist service for young people who experience a mental health difficulty and who may pose a risk to themselves or others. CAMHS workers in this team provide training, and advice and consultation to other professionals as well as specialist assessments and work with the young person and their family. The Clinicians in this team work closely with children’s services, schools, the Police and other relevant organisations to ensure the health, wellbeing and safety of the young person and those around them
Contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS).
Telephone: 0300 304 2198
Patient Advice and Liaison Service Swandean Arundel Road Worthing West Sussex BN13 3EP
Or for more information, go to www.sussexpartnership.nhs.uk/patient-advice-and-liason-service-pals