Children’s Mental Health Week
Supporting staff and students to achieve their full potential since 1968.
Welcome to our weekly CENMAC blog post.
Children’s Mental Health Week – by Toby Seriki, CENMAC Specialist Technology Assistant
Looking after our mental health has always been important, and awareness has grown massively over the last few years. However, Coronavirus and the resulting lockdowns have changed the lives of children and young people in ways that have impacted on the mental health and wellbeing of many of them. Stress, changes in routine, feelings of loneliness, and many other factors have caused the need for mental health support to grow. So now is as important a time as ever to keep raising awareness around mental health and to try to reach as many people as possible.
… sometimes you may need to look after your mind to help prevent or recover from mental illness.
Created by the children’s mental health charity Place2Be, Children’s Mental Health Week is running from 1-7 February with the aim of shining a spotlight on the importance of children and young people’s mental health. By clicking here, you can find more information about Children’s Mental Health Week, as well as some really useful blogs and resources.
A really useful way of explaining mental health to children is to compare it to physical health. The mind and the body are closely linked; looking after your mind can help your body feel better, and looking after your body can help your mind feel better. In some situations, you can think of mental illness as similar to a physical injury. In the same way as you might take extra care of your body in order to avoid or to recover from a physical injury, sometimes you may need to look after your mind to help prevent or recover from mental illness. If you have injured a muscle for example, it will take time to heal and you might need to do some physio. Depending on the severity of the injury, it will need more or less time and physio to heal. Right after doing some physio, your muscle might feel a little better. However, with time and repetition the muscle really starts to heal, and without it, the muscle may not heal properly. You can think of mental health strategies, for example stress reduction techniques or mindfulness exercises, as similar to physio. They can help you feel a lot better in the moment, and using them regularly can have a really positive impact on mental health over a period of time.
Of course, this is a very simplified example and mental illness can take on many different forms. If you feel you or your child is struggling with their mental health, you can find your local NHS Mental health support services here, or search for mental health charities and help-lines here.
At CENMAC and Charlton Park Academy, we have some existing materials on the topic of wellbeing and mental health. Please see Charlton Park Academy’s Wellbeing page for advice and resources, including some nice little videos put together by some of our Teachers. Also see this previous CENMAC blog entry for information about World Mental Health Day, and this CENMAC blog entry about International Stress Awareness Day for some useful resources and strategies for reducing stress and improving wellbeing. See CENMAC’s twitter feed for more posts relating to Children’s Mental Health Week.
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Children’s Mental Health Week is running from
1– 7 February with the aim of shining a spotlight
on the importance of children and
young people’s mental health.