As reported by the latest Digital NHS statistics, 1.54 million people were in contact with mental health services at the end of January 2022. Moreover, a record number of more than 400,000 children a month are being treated for mental health probelms, which shows an unprecedented wellbeing crisis in children and young adults.
“There is an unprecedented crisis in young people’s mental health, further evidenced by these record numbers of young people needing help from the NHS”
“What we’ve seen across our frontline services in UK schools is rising numbers of young people struggling with anxiety, self-harm, eating difficulties and suicidal thoughts.”
According to Olly Parker, the increase of young people seeking mental health support from the NHS is unsustainable. Isolation, disruption to education and reduced access to support have had an immense impact on children's mental health. While more young people are receiving support, the rise in the number of people looking for support and help is constant.
The NHS data also shows desperate measures when it comes to hospitalising under-16s due to bed shortages. In February, an unspecified number of young adults have spent more than 50 days being treated on adult mental health wards, which, according to guidance, should not happen.
A survey published in February 2022 by Place2Be and the National Association of Head Teachers finds that mental health problems among pupils had increased since the start of the academic year, including low self esteem (86%), depression (76%) and constant feelings of anger (68%).
As a response to the surge of mental health cases, 4,700 schools and colleges are now expanding their mental health teams and opening a 24/7 mental health crisis telephone support service for all ages.
To read the full Mental Health Services Monthly Statistics, visit digital.nhs.uk