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Support for Hertfordshire teens worried about exam results

With exam results looming, stress levels may be rising and Hertfordshire GPs are recommending that young people feeling anxious log on for free online counselling and support.

“It is perfectly natural to worry about receiving your exam results or even to feel a little anxious,” said Watford GP Dr Rami Eliad, who leads on services for children and young people for Herts Valleys CCG. “If you find yourself thinking about your results constantly you may find it helpful to use some of the great websites and apps to get emotional support and even talk online with an expert who can help in complete confidence. Remember you’re not alone.”

Childline recently launched an app to provide counselling to young people in need of help directly through their mobile devices. It’s called 'For Me' and is available as a free download here. It can be discreetly installed on your phone. If someone happens to see your phone or iPad, they can't tell it's a Childline service, and you can lock it with a PIN. By downloading the app, you're in control. You can talk whenever - and wherever - you need to. There’s great advice on the Childline website too. 

There’s also free online emotional and mental health support on website Kooth.com which has been used by thousands of Hertfordshire young people aged 10-25. Kooth’s fully-trained therapists are available until 12noon-10pm from Monday-Friday and 6pm-10pm at the weekend, 365 days a year. Counsellors can help with lots of different problems, including exam-related stress, family problems, eating disorders, loneliness, bullying, anxiety and depression.

“We know that the run-up to exam results day can be extremely stressful as young people think the worst and worry about what the future holds,” said Dr Prag Moodley, a Stevenage GP who leads on mental health services for East and North Hertfordshire CCG.  “I'd urge parents to remind their children that there is no shame in seeking support during hard times, like when you’re waiting for exam results.”

If parents need help in talking to their teenagers, visit www.healthyyoungmindsinherts.org.uk/parents-and-carers/talking-your-teen-10-tips-parents-young-people for tips.

Hertfordshire’s plan to improve emotional wellbeing services for children and young people received £2m national funding.  One of the transformation plan’s priorities is to focus on prevention and early intervention, giving children and young people good emotional and wellbeing support. You can read Hertfordshire’s Transformation Plan for Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing 2015-17 here.

Visit www.healthyyoungmindsinherts.org.uk for more information.