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I am worried about my child's mental health

Mental Health Needs Panel

Being a parent or carer can be challenging, especially if you are worried about your child's mental health. Mental health problems can affect children of all ages and backgrounds, and they can have a significant impact on their lives.

What are the signs and symptoms of mental health problems in children?

Common signs and symptoms of mental health problems in children include:

  • Changes in mood, such as feeling sad, anxious, or irritable
  • Changes in behaviour, such as withdrawing from social activities or becoming aggressive
  • Changes in sleep patterns, such as having difficulty falling asleep or waking up early
  • Difficulty concentrating or making decisions
  • Difficulty coping with stress
  • Frequent physical complaints, such as headaches or stomachaches
  • Thoughts of self-harm or suicide

How do I know if my child needs professional help?

If you are concerned about your child's mental health, it is important to talk to their doctor. Your doctor can assess your child's needs and refer them to a mental health professional if necessary.

You may also want to consider talking to a child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) team. CAMHS teams are specialised teams that provide mental health support to children and young people.

Who can help me?

Livewell Southwest's CAMHS has multidisciplinary teams that offer a high quality service to all children and young people between the ages of 5 - 18 who are experiencing difficulties with their mental health.

The Zone offers a wide range of information, advice, counselling and support services to young people, including support for mental health.

Many schools have mental health services providing support to children and young people who might be experiencing mental health problems.

Additionally, you can contact Plymouth's Early Help and SEND Advice Line  and book a conversation with a Family Support Worker. Just call 01752 668000, or email

How can I support my child's mental health?

There are many things you can do to support your child's mental health, such as:

  • Talk to your child about their feelings. It is important to talk to your child about their feelings, even if they are difficult. This will help your child to feel understood and supported.
  • Provide your child with a safe and supportive home environment. Your child needs to feel safe and supported at home. This means providing them with a loving and nurturing environment.
  • Encourage your child to engage in healthy activities. Healthy activities, such as exercise and spending time with friends and family, can help to improve your child's mental health.
  • Seek professional help if needed. If you are concerned about your child's mental health, it is important to seek professional help.


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Plymouth's Local Offer is organised into four main categories covering the following age ranges:

 Plymouth Local Offer homepage



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