Shocking new figures have revealed that almost 2,000 St Helens teenagers, aged between 16 and 17, are so anxious that they have suffered sleepless nights in the last year.
Research by The Children’s Society discovered one in five youngsters say they frequently feel anxious and 73 per cent admit they have felt judged simply for being a teenager.
The concern is mirrored among parents, with 70 per cent saying that life is tougher for their teenagers than it was for them.
And 5 Borough’s NHS Partnership mental health service, which runs services in St Helens, is now set to review support for teenagers in an attempt to tackle the problem.
A spokesman said: “In conjunction with Nice guidelines and alongside local authority and we are having discussions on how to respond and support the emotional and mental health needs of our young people in St Helens.
“There has been a reported increase in referrals to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) nationally and St Helens is no exception to this, therefore yes referrals for young people experiencing severe and enduring anxiety that would require a Tier 3 specialist Camhs response would also have increased in line with the increased referrals to CAMHS.
“And it’s difficult to predict whether numbers will soar, however as awareness of emotional and mental issues in children and young people increases it is likely more young people access appropriate services.”
“Half of children and young people with long term mental health problems first experience symptoms before the age of 14 and three quarters of them before their mid-20s.
“Giving children and their families the right help through a broad range of support from the outset and through early and effective intervention when problems first appear can make a real difference to young lives.”
The Children and Young People’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies programme (CYP IAPT) is a service transformation programme delivered by NHS England that aims to improve existing Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) working in the community.
The programme works to transform services provided by the NHS and partners from Local Authority and Third Sector that together form local area CAMHS Partnerships.