Knowledge is power, so we’ve included some basic information about a few of the most common issues young people bring to us. You can download the info on each page too!
We sometimes use the word ‘depressed’ to describe when we are feeling unhappy or low, but depression is different from having an everyday case of the ‘blues’. When we are depressed the feelings can go on for weeks at a time and they can interfere with our ability to cope with the rest of our lives.
We all go through times in life when we feel worried about a particular event or about something new we have to do. You might already notice people you know who seem to worry a lot and others who just seem to take things in their stride. Neither of these ways is wrong or right, we just all react to things differently.
There are times when a little stress can actually be a good thing because it motivates us to deal with the challenges life throws at us, but too much can lead to us feeling overwhelmed and unable to cope.
Self-harm refers to the different ways that people deliberately hurt themselves. It might conjure up images of someone cutting themselves, but it can also include things like deliberate burning, scratching, hair pulling or taking an overdose. Sometimes people self-harm in secret and it might be a long time before they feel able to tell someone else about it.
People often think that the seriousness of the injury is a sign of how bad someone is feeling, but this isn’t true: a person who hurts themselves a bit can be feeling just as bad as a person who hurts themselves a lot.
Getting angry sometimes is totally normal. We all find stuff in life that makes us angry. When our anger is used carefully and constructively it can be a powerful force for helping us to get our voices heard and make changes in our lives for the better.
But just because anger is a normal emotion, it doesn’t mean that it’s easy to cope with. It can be really uncomfortable to talk about and many of us find it hard to express it openly.
Food plays a big part in our lives: not only is it essential for our health and development but sharing food and eating together has an important role in how we socialise and spend time together.
Sometimes problems can develop when we use food as a way to manage painful feelings we might have in our lives. Anyone can develop an eating disorder whatever their age, sex, or background, and the reason why someone may develop a problem can be complicated.
Psychosis describes an experience where it becomes difficult to know what is real. It can be distressing and often includes things like hearing or seeing things that other people can’t see or hear. It may also involve unusual beliefs that others don’t share such as thinking others are trying to harm you or your friends or family. Sometimes it can be difficult to know who can be trusted, especially if you feel at risk.
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) affects people when they are troubled by obsessions and compulsions of some kind.
Sometimes it’s harder to recognise when you’re stressed than you might think. Knowing what the signs are can be useful because the sooner you notice the stress building up, the quicker you can do something to create some calm again.
Suicide can feel like a really difficult thing to talk about, but every year thousands of young people go through times where they have suicidal thoughts. Not everyone who has thoughts about killing themselves will end up taking their life, but some people who do will.