Child and adolescent mental health services

Child and adolescent mental health services (which professionals may know as CAMHS), work with children and young people up to their 18th birthday. They work with child and young people who are experiencing concerns around violent or angry behaviour, depression, severe attachment, behavioural and emotional disorders, eating difficulties, low self-esteem, anxiety, obsessions or compulsions, sleep problems, self-harming and the effects of abuse or traumatic events.

Once a referral is accepted into the child and adolescent mental health services team, the young person and their families are offered an initial assessment appointment and will be offered support, treatment or referral to another team/agency as appropriate.

For a very small number of young people, highly intensive assessment and treatment packages may be required. Children and young people offered this will usually have had significant previous input from services.

The child and adolescent mental health services teams have different professional backgrounds (different skills and training) and include psychiatrists, nurses, psychologists, social workers, psychotherapists, family therapists, outreach workers, and counsellors. The team are all trained in and have extensive experience of working with children and young people who have mental health difficulties. The team is also experienced in working with and supporting families.