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A quarter of teens aren’t getting any mental health support

According to new figures, a quarter of under-18s are being turned away from mental health services that they turn to for help

Almost a quarter of under-18s are being turned away from mental health services, according to a new study. The figures were compiled by think-tank CentreForum, and found that 23% of children and teens weren’t getting any mental health care, despite going to their GPs for help. 

Worryingly, in some cases young people who had gone to their doctors to ask for help in treating their eating disorders were being told that they couldn’t receive help as their BMI wasn’t low enough – creating a dangerous incentive for them to continue losing weight. In other instances, young people weren’t being given any help unless they admitted to having had suicidal thoughts. Meanwhile, some young people had to wait two and a half years for specialist mental health support – an almost imaginably long time, especially to any young person.

Today’s findings are particularly worrying given that we’re currently in the grips of a teen mental health crisis. Three children in every classroom have a diagnosable mental disorder, and recent stats revealed that English children are among the unhappiest in the world. Given this, it’s more vital than ever that these support services exist for young people – but unfortunately, given the current NHS funding landscape, it’s looking unlikely that major progress will be made any time soon.

h/t Guardian