Mental Health in Schools Conference 2017 report

‘Improving mental health in schools – what does the research tell us?’ By Lucas Shelemy, PhD student On Tuesday 12th September 2017, the AnDY Research Clinic together with the School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences held a national conference discussing mental health in schools. The event was a mixture of brand-new research, practical strategies and eye-opening personal stories. The most powerful moments of the day were the speeches from four Young Champions representing Time To Change, a charity that aims to reduce the stigma around mental health. These brilliant speakers; Jack, Abbie, Jessica and Mary each gave their stories about their experiences when in school as well as providing advice for school staff and leads. The inclusion of young people throughout the day is representative of our work in AnDY, as we try and include the young voice in all the research and clinical work that we carry out. Having people with lived experience of mental health problems part of the event...
Read More

Mental Health in Schools Conference 2017

By Catherine Newell, AnDY RAG facilitator The Mental Health in Schools conference was made up of a day’s conference with a range of impressive keynote speakers, preceded by an evening event with a variety of practical workshops. I was lucky enough to be able to attend on both days. Tuesday’s conference started with an introductory address by Vice Chancellor Sir David Bell. This was followed by talks from academics both from the University of Reading and elsewhere. One stand-out speech for me was that by Professor Lord Richard Layard, who noted that schools make almost as great a difference to emotional wellbeing as they do to GCSE grades, before suggesting numerous different ways in which mental health could be promoted in schools both now and in the future. Even more impressive than the talks by academics were those by the Time to Change Young Champions. These four young people spoke clearly and openly about their experiences of mental ill-health (including OCD, anxiety, and...
Read More

Is there really a mental health crisis amongst our young people? 

By Lucinda Powell, former teacher As a teacher with little time to delve beyond the headlines about the ‘mental health crisis’ I have wondered what exactly has changed. Thankfully Neil Humphrey was able to answer some of these really important questions.  Yes and no!  We are seeing more issues in some groups of children (mainly adolescent girls) but this has been compounded by changes and cuts to CAHMS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) meaning that problems that in the past would have been nipped in the bud are now able to manifest in our children and young people (CYP).  However, the media coverage of mental health in the last 10 years or so has increased exponentially so it is really in the public psyche. So the burden seems to be falling on schools to sort it out.  I worry about this: teachers are teachers, not mental health experts.  And let’s face it they are also suffering all sorts of mental health...
Read More

New Thames Valley Clinical Trials Unit

Cathy, Shirley, Chloe and Catherine (AnDY Research Advisor) attended the launch of the new Thames Valley Clinical Trials Unit (http://www.tvctu.org/) at the University of Reading on Thursday 18th May. Cathy spoke to the audience about the AnDY research group and, in particular, the work we are currently doing in collaboration with Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/files/TVCTU/A5_TVCTU_Flyer_August_2015.pdf...
Read More

Research on the BBC

Only a small number of children and young people experiencing mental health difficulties receive professional help. We have been doing research to find out more about the reasons for this. Our work shows the range of barriers parents face seeking and accessing support from professionals for mental health difficulties in children and teenagers. We found that parents often feel blamed for their child’s difficulties, and it can be really hard for parents to know when it ok to ask for help, and how they can get help for their child. Our research really highlights how important it is to remove the stigma surrounding mental health difficulties, and the need to raise awareness about the support that is available, to ensure more families get the help they need.We were really excited when the BBC invited us to come in and talk about this research. On 20th March Tessa Reardon from AnDY, together with Beckie and Luke (a family who took part...
Read More
AnDY Away Day

AnDY Away Day

The AnDY research group enjoyed a fantastic away day on March 16th. The warm-up task certainly did its job -- we all found out quite how hard it is to lower a bamboo pole to the ground as a group while keeping our fingers underneath it. If you don’t believe us, try it! We then had a chance to hear about recent updates within the research group, particularly how the new research clinic has developed since the beginning of the year, and to think about our achievements and the challenges that we face as a group. From the feedback it was clear that three stand-out parts of the day were the delicious lunch at the Queen’s Head, the wall of heart-shaped thank you messages, and the amazing bake off. Well done to Polly and Faith, our star bakers!             ...
Read More

Has your child experienced a frightening event?

We are keen to understand what helps children cope. We are conducting a research study looking at how children cope shortly after being involved in any kind of frightening experience. We hope that 300 parents whose child has experienced a traumatic event will take part. The study will involve filling in some questionnaires online. These questionnaires will be about your thoughts, responses and feelings since your child’s traumatic experience. The questionnaires should take about 10 minutes. You are under no obligation to participate and you are free to withdraw from the study at any time. You can access the questionnaire here: https://bathpsychology.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_73DPAr44M9Tf6XX...
Read More

Parent-Led CBT for Child Anxiety

NEW FROM THE GUILFORD PRESS Parent-Led CBT for Child Anxiety Helping Parents Help Their Kids Cathy Creswell, DClinPsy, PhD, Monika Parkinson, DClinPsy, and Kerstin Thirlwall, DClinPsy, Lucy Willetts, PhD, all at: School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Berkshire, UK Foreword by Thomas H. Ollendick Publication Date: October 5, 2016 E-Book Publication Date: October 5, 2016 Therapist manuals for the ‘Overcoming your child’s fears and worries’ brief parent-delivered CBT approach for treating child anxiety disorders (e.g. see http://bjp.rcpsych.org/content/203/6/436.long)  can now be downloaded for free from here: http://centaur.reading.ac.uk/65537 http://centaur.reading.ac.uk/65533...
Read More

New Paper: Brief Behavioural Activation

Laura Pass, Hannah Whitney and Shirley Reynolds had their case study published today - congratulations! Pass, L., Whitney, H. & Reynolds, S. (2016). Brief behavioral activation for adolescent depression: Working with complexity and risk. Clinical Case Studies. The paper can be accessed here: http://ccs.sagepub.com/content/early/2016/04/20/1534650116645402?papetoc...
Read More