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This blog post was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Be MindEd to spot mental health problems early

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Mental health, Viewpoint

There’s no doubt about it – adults are more aware of mental health issues than ever before. However, the confidence needed to identify someone with a mental health condition is still lacking. And a recent survey of just over 2000 adults has confirmed just that, as Dr Raphael  Kelvin, Child Psychiatrist and Clinical Lead for the MindEd programme, explains.

The survey, commissioned by MindEd, a consortium of mental health experts, took place earlier this month and found that over a third (38 percent) of adults would not know how to identify a child or young person with mental health issues.

Dr Kelvin: "We already know that half of lifetime mental illnesses are apparent by the age of 14"
Dr Kelvin: "We already know that half of lifetime mental illnesses are apparent by the age of 14"

And for those that did, just over half (51 percent) said they would be worried about approaching the issue with the child, or the child’s parent, in case they were mistaken.

We already know that half of lifetime mental illnesses are apparent by the age of 14, with three-quarters established by the age of 21, yet 75 percent of young people go completely untreated. This puts them at increased risk of alcohol and drug misuse, self-harm, neglect and in extreme cases, suicide.

So to help ensure young people get the help they need, the MindEd Consortium launched a brand new website this month which contains quality assured advice and information on child and adolescent mental health. Its aim – to give adults who work with young people the skills to support wellbeing and to identify children at risk of mental health conditions early, the confidence to act on their concerns and signpost them to the services that can help.

Funded by the Department of Health, MindEd is free to access and provides a considerable suite of bite-size e-learning packages, individually tailored to each audience group – teachers and sports coaches, healthcare professionals, police and judiciary staff, social workers and many more.

minded logo

With well over 20 different mental health conditions with many different signs and symptoms, we’re not saying adults need to become doctors. But if every professional and volunteer used MindEd to become more mental health aware,  we could potentially prevent thousands of children falling through the gaps and missing out on much needed care and support.

If you’re interested in MindEd and think people in your organisation might be too, contact the team at They'll be able to give you the latest information and some useful tools, including this new film, which you can use to encourage colleagues to start using the website.

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  1. Comment by Termite posted on

    Never mind the thousands of children, remember they grow into adults who get abandoned by the system!

    the only guarantee you get from a psychiatrist is yet another bottle of pills as they work their way through the BNF.

    Nobody looks at the root causes, psychiatrists process patients like objects on a conveyor belt!

    If i want to see my GP I simply make an appointment, if i want to see my psychiatrists, i have to threaten suicide! Why can't we make appointments to see psychiatrists in the same way we do for GP's?

    I have self harmed for 61 years and still do! It is the only comfort I get in this very uncaring mental health system!

  2. Comment by jennyb posted on

    I can understand this dilemma. There are barriers to accessing psychiatric support at the time when it is needed.
    There should be much easier ways to self refer.
    There should be more prominent services locally like drop in crisis support centres
    There should also be free phone numbers and free phone numbers from mobiles for those who need responsive care.