Young People’s Mental Health

SMHL Tel: 08000 0309 500
The Children and young people’s Sussex mental health line is a mental health support line and information service for children, young people, parents and carers.
The service offers listening support, advice, information and signposting to anyone experiencing difficulties, or who may be in crisis and in urgent need of help with their mental health. It is a free service and available to anyone concerned about their own mental health or that of a relative or friend. This includes carers and healthcare professionals.
The telephone line is open 24/7 and all calls are answered by mental health trained clinicians.
When to contact SMHL?
 If a young person is suicidal or has self-harmed
If a young person is experiencing extreme emotional distress that won’t stop
If a young person is experiencing sudden or severe anxiety which is preventing them getting on with their normal life
If a young person is in extreme emotional distress and would like to speak to someone
If anyone needs urgent advice about a young person’s mental health.
What SMHL can do to help?
 Offer advice and support about how to cope in a crisis
Help the young person and carers make plans to keep the young person safe
Complete an urgent assessment of risk
Offer follow-up from local CAMHS Duty and Liaison Teams
Offer signposting to other services that may be able to support.

 The health line is accessible to people who are hearing or speech impaired via Text Relay. To start a call, dial 18002 then the full phone number of the helpline: 0800 0309 500.
For callers whose first language is not English, they are able to arrange a telephone interpreter for other community languages. Call the helpline and let them know the language needed and they will make the necessary arrangements.

For further information please visit:
Below are some strategies that sometimes help distract a person when they have thoughts of self harm.
.  Pinging an elastic band
.  Holding cold ice cubes against the skin
.  Drawing on skin
.  Tight or heavy clothing
.  Being held tightly
.  Rubbing on cream
.  Chewing something with a strong taste
.  Smelling something with a strong scent (lavender rolling ball bottle)
.  Having a cool shower or bath
.  Music (exploring different music styles)
.  Recording of your voice offering words of reassurance
.  Physical (rhythmic) movement
.  Doing an activity using the hands
.  Screaming into a pillow/silent screams of rage
.  Punching a pillow or punch bag
.  Writing it down and then screwing it up/burning it
.  Writing poetry
.  Drawing and creative expression
.  Singing, dancing, acting
The Youth Emotional Support (YES) team provides a free service for young people aged 11-18 looking for support for their wellbeing.
They can support you with mood, anxiety, relationship issues, self-injury, self esteem and significant live events.

They provide this in a one-one support and group working capacity.

You can self refer to their services or discuss this in further detail with your GP.

Youth Emotional Support Service Link
Here are some self help links to websites that some patients find useful:
Information for parents/carers
This is an Australian site that has some useful resources which may be helpful:
This is a recommended YouTube channel that says it in simple ways and isn’t trying to sell anything:


Private Counselling

These are the names of some “apps” that you can put on your phone to support your mental health, some patients have found them useful, but make sure they are right for you:
Stay Alive
Time to Talk is a friendly and approachable NHS service offering talking therapies for a variety of conditions.

Self-referral form
Who you can speak to if you feel unsafe: 
Call NHS 111 who have a crisis support part of their service and can call an ambulance to take you to a place of safety as needed
Call Sussex mental health line 03005000101. This is available outside of normal GP hours
Call us here in the GP practice
Accident & Emergency (open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week) : 999

24/7 Numbers to call 
Samaritans (open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week)
Call 08457 909090 or email: [email protected]
Childline (24 hours a day, 7 days a week)
Call: 0800 1111 Or chat online:
Young Minds (mental health):
Web based resources (child mental health) (A mindfulness app for relaxation) (Relaxation made easy)
Who parents/carers can speak to if they are worried a child is not safe: 
Young Minds –
Helpline on 0808 802 5544 from 9.30am – 4pm Mon-Fri
NSPCC on 0808 800 5000 or email [email protected]