Internet Cliques Glamorise Kids' Mental Health Issues - Therapist

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Consciousness - Sputnik International
Britain has one of the lowest numbers of hospital beds in Europe for young people struggling with serious mental health problems, according to EU-funded research. Sputnik has discussed the issue of mental health treatment in the UK with therapist Diane Parkinson.

Sputnik: According to new research looking at mental health provision across Europe, Britain has one of the lowest numbers of hospital beds for young people struggling with serious mental health problems. In your profession as a therapist how true is this? Are children with mental health issues in Britain being failed here? 

Diana Parkinson: I think from my perspective, as a therapist, I'm just aware of having more referrals now of young people that sort of young people and teenagers with mental health issues, particularly things like obsessive compulsive disorder, or OCD, which is quite alarming — there's not a lot of help. I think it's very difficult because obviously, we live in a society where people are medicated for things like depression, or mental health disorders. There's a reluctance to medicate young people sometimes so young people do need medication, that is the only way but that can still be difficult to access. There's not really any provision or very little provision. Now, it seems that cams which has been around for a long time for young people running into difficulties not able to provide enough support for young people with mental health issues.

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Sputnik: What policies do we need to see from the government to reverse these failings and better protect struggling children?

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Diana Parkinson: I think that troubled children and teenagers, I know this because I find it, they've got access to all of this stuff on the internet now. So children are coming home from school, or spending their days often on the internet, and lots of parents are not supervising that. Even if they are, kids can still find ways to come across stuff that would be better they didn't come across. In the past, I think unhappy children tended not to talk about their feelings, but which was not so good. Now, we've gone completely the other way, where sort of cliques will form in schools and on the Internet, encouraging kids to dwell — or even revel — in their problems, and often it glamorises and makes mental health issues worse. Just some years ago, I remember with a child with anorexia, who's got a particular app on her phone, she kept getting texts and images about encouraging the anorexia — these things just didn't exist. We wouldn't have had that access to not hope there's not time to dream or time to think about how do we change the world? How do we make it better? So I think it's everything is quite suppressed and therefore depressed. So it's not surprising we get these problems.

Sputnik: If we leave this problem unfixed and unsolved; what effect will this have on society and mental health provision?

Diana Parkinson: It's very concerning. Each generation needs to be able to be creative, to know how to solve problems, to be unafraid to be able to challenge the way to have world peace’s that we were able to talk to people with opposing views, without fear, to find a way to go forward to some level of failed to agree on that this is the way we go forward. If we can't compromise, learn how to listen without fear to one another, and to reach compromise, then we can't have peace, we need a peaceful world. If this peace and people are happier, more content, we need a world of contentment — it's very easy. I think too much is suppressed. You're not allowed to talk about that. That's not politically correct. You can't challenge that. Do as I say not, you know, don't think for yourself. We need to go back to the days of children growing up where they learn to play with cardboard boxes and make things rather than having everything given to them. Without fear, the ability to be able to talk and communicate with one another, to know that it's all right to challenge; I find young people or people generally are very afraid to think confrontation means that you're going to fight somebody, rather than you're confronting an issue that needs to be dealt with and sorted out resolved. If we live this shutdown life and we will be depressed.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect Sputnik's position.

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