Skip to main content

Mental Health Difficulties in Children and Young People: A Toolkit for Parents


In 2020, one in six children (16%) aged five to 16 had a probable mental health disorder up from one in nine (11%) in 2017.

It is worrying and stressful for any parent to see their child having difficulty with their mental health, and when you search for information it can be hard to know where to start. That’s why we’ve compiled 'Mental Health Difficulties in Children and Young People. A Toolkit for Parents'. It is designed  to provide an overview of the key topics, signpost to further information from trusted sources, and share insights from parents and young people who have been through it.

This toolkit will help you to:

  • Understand good mental health and mental health difficulties in children and young people
  • Be aware of why and when difficulties can arise and what to look out for
  • Know how to help your child if they are struggling
  • Know when and how to get professional help
  • Understand that you need to look after yourself, too.

The CMHA is focused on helping businesses to support the wellbeing of all their people. Given that parents make up a significant proportion of most workforces, we hope that businesses will share this toolkit internally as a support to those who need it.

This toolkit has been produced in collaboration with CMHA members PwC, Morgan Stanley and the Bank of England and leading mental health organisations Place2Be, Young Minds and The Pears Maudsley Centre for Children and Young People. 

"This was by far the best event I have attended in relation to childrens mental health.  The speakers were good and real life experiences were very powerful. There was also a lot of mutual support and understanding so you don't feel alone.  There were also many links and other resources I wasn't already aware of."
"The whole event was excellent from start to finish. Honest, open, emotional, real and informative with practical advice from all speakers sharing their real world personal and professional experiences to help more parents and young people to approach mental health challenges from a different perspective."
"As an ex teacher I have attended many training courses on mental health but, as a parent, grandparent and current foster carer, this one is 'The One'!  Short, to the point, powerful, straightforward advice along with very useful signposting and reassurance. Thank you."