Who are CAMHS?
CAMHS stands for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS). We support young people aged 0-18 who are experiencing mental health difficulties and are finding it hard to cope with everyday life.
Our teams are made up of a variety of professionals. Many are called CAMHS practitioners and have a nursing, social work, or support worker background. There are also clinical psychologists, CAMHS psychiatrists, peer support workers and administrators in each team.
Core CAMHS is a team of trained Mental Health Practitioners and Assistant Practitioners from various clinical backgrounds including Mental Health Nurses, Social Workers, Psychologists and Psychiatrists.
This is the team you would usually see on your first visit to CAMHS, unless you accessed our service at a period of crisis. This team works with children, young people, parents & carers to assess the mental health of children and adolescents who have been identified as potentially having moderate to severe mental health needs.
Visit our my first appointment page to learn more about what to expect on your first visit to CAMHS.
The CAMHS Crisis and Enhanced Treatment Teams (CCETT) are based in Lincoln and Boston and cover the whole county.
The staff members are from various backgrounds including; social work, nursing, occupational therapy and support workers. We aim to support young people in a mental health crisis through providing assessment and intensive home treatment. This includes supporting young people experiencing thoughts of suicide and engaging in significant self harming behaviours. By working with young people and their families and carers, we aim to avoid hospital admission wherever possible by providing intensive support in the home environment. We know from extensive research this provides better outcomes for young people.
Our working hours are 8.45am – 7pm every day. We run an out of hours triage service 7pm – 8.45am to respond to A&E, the police or ambulance services. This is to provide support and advice around mental health presentations to these services. We aim to see all young people appropriate for the service within 72 hours.
We are able to offer intensive, evidence based, short term support (i.e. up to eight weeks) to manage risk and prevent deterioration via group work, 1:1 therapy (CBT, DBT, EMDR and Animal Assisted).
Young people can access our service via GPs and social workers directly or can make a CAMHS self-referral 9.30am – 4.30pm Monday to Friday.
If a young person does not meet the criteria for our team, we will signpost to a more appropriate service (within LPFT or otherwise).
This team works with children and young people presenting with an eating disorder such as Anorexia Nervosa or Bulimia.
CAMHS Learning Disability team is a community based specialist service offering support to children and young people, aged between 0-18 years, who are experiencing significant mental health problems and who are diagnosed with moderate to severe learning disability.
What we can help with
- Mental health and/ or associated complex needs
- Challenging behaviour
How we can help
The team will work with you, your parents/carers, schools, and health professionals and social care to offer individual tailored advice and strategies to support you. This might include:
- Conducting a comprehensive holistic assessment to include psychological, emotional and behavioural health as well as looking at physical issues which could be affecting mental health well-being (e.g. sleep)
- Conducting a psychiatric assessment and medication consultation / review (if required)
- Offering behaviour management advice and interventions
- 1:1 time with the young person and their family
- Offering telephone consultations and advice
- Teaching and consultation to agencies (such as schools, respite services, children’s homes)
- Offering a parent support program
- Signposting to other appropriate agencies
This is not an exhaustive list and most importantly, following any assessments, you and your family will be invited to be involved in deciding the best course of action.
What we help with
Usually when we are sad, angry, stressed or worried these feelings gradually pass with time and with support from people around us e.g. family, friends, school, support workers. However, if these feelings go on for a long time and start to really affect your everyday life, then CAMHS may be able to help you.
At CAMHS we see young people with many different types of mental health difficulties and may depend on the team service. Some examples include:
- Low mood and Depression
- Anxiety, including phobia’s and obsessive thoughts and behaviours
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Self-harm and thoughts of suicide
- Eating disorders, including anorexia and bulimia
How we can help
Here at CAMHS we offer what are called “care pathways”. This means that if you are experiencing a mental health difficulty and need our support, we will recommend the therapy that is likely to give you the best outcome, based on medical evidence and guidelines.
However we also recognise that everybody is different, so if you came to CAMHS it is really important that we work together with you to decide what kind of help and treatment is right for you.
These are some (but not all!) of the types of treatments you may be offered at CAMHS.
- Cognitive behavioural therapy
- Dialectical behavioural therapy
- Eye movement desensitisation reprocessing
- Interpersonal Psychotherapy
- Group work
“Before I came to CAMHS I had been suffering with OCD and Anxiety. Dealing with upsetting OCD thoughts made me very tired, and sometimes my anxiety made it hard for me to go out and do what I wanted.
I was worried I wouldn’t be understood at CAMHS, and that the experience would be very upsetting. But the staff I met were very supportive, and I never felt judged. I was helped to understand and manage my difficulties. CAMHS helped me to develop strategies for dealing with situations that I found difficult, and I was able to build up to them with smaller, more managable goals.
The techniques I learnt at CAMHS helped me to manage situations that made me anxious, and move past unwanted thoughts.
Now I’ve been able to do what I want, and even volunteer to help others recovering from mental illness.”