“There for you”: Helping parents to support young people with mental health problems
PHE ePoster Library. Hagell A. Sep 12, 2017; 186578; 94
Dr. Ann Hagell
Dr. Ann Hagell
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Abstract Introduction: Parents are a critical part of young people's practical and emotional support throughout the secondary school years and the transition to adulthood. Many young people have mental health problems during this period, and need the help of their parents to navigate services and recover. But parents of adolescents are a very under supported group, and there is limited research on their experiences or their suggestions for improvement. Method: This mixed-methods study included an on-line survey of parents of young people with mental health problems (n316), three group discussions with parents (n30), supplementary individual interviews (n9), two group discussions with young people (n10) and a multidisciplinary stakeholder event.Results: Qualitative and quantitative data generated findings on parents' role in caring for a young person with mental health problems; parents' emotional and practical experiences; and ways of supporting parents in the current system so that they could make a more significant contribution to recovery. Recommendations for service improvement included development of support groups, more practical advice on how to manage crises and day to day care, and new models of parents liaison. Conclusions: Parents are a significant part of the context for young people in distress and play a major role in finding interventions. However they often feel distressed, left out of the picture and confused by what is on offer. External funding details The project was funded by the Sir Halley Stewart Trust, and the views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily the Trust.
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