Health and relationships
NHS - how to find and register with NHS services
At 16 years old you can make your own choices about your medical care.
Find out how to register with a doctor or where your local hospital, NHS Walk-In Centre, doctor‘s surgery, dentist, optician and pharmacist is by visiting:
If you are a young person and you feel down or depressed, this booklet produced by Young Minds is for you. It talks about how normal it is for people to feel up or down at different times, but highlights the difference between these feelings and more serious longer-term depression which can make daily life difficult.
The ‘In School Stay Cool’ booklet is aimed particularly at those young people starting secondary school. This booklet highlights worries that young people can have, such as school work, exams, making friends, fitting in, feeling under pressure, being bullied, not wanting to go to school and not getting on with a teacher. It then suggests ways young people can cope and manage these difficulties.
Growing up and leaving childhood entering adulthood is both exciting but can be daunting. Aimed at 16-18 year-olds, the Entering Adulthood booklet examines the excitement, fears, uncertainty and difficulties associated with the transition from childhood to adulthood and suggests ways of coping.
Self-harm, or self-injury, describes a wide range of things people deliberately do to themselves that appear to be harmful but usually do not kill them. Cutting the arms or the back of the legs with a razor or knife is the most common form of self-harm, but self-harm can take many forms, including burning, biting, hitting or taking overdoses. A young person may self-harm to help them cope with negative feelings, to feel more in control or to punish themselves. It can be a way of relieving overwhelming feelings that build up inside, when they feel isolated, angry, guilty or desperate (text taken from young minds).
The Young Minds booklet ‘Worried about Self Injury’ is a really useful booklet to help young people understand more about what self-injury is and why people do it. It shows young people how to find support.
Low self esteem/shyness
Self-esteem is how a person feels about themselves and what they do. Someone with positive self-esteem will generally approach things thinking they are a good person who deserves love and support and can succeed in life. Someone with low or negative self-esteem will generally think they are not good at things, don’t deserve love or support and that situations will work out badly for them (text taken from young minds).
For further information about the signs and symptoms of low self esteem please visit the Young Minds website.
Mental illness in the family
Anyone who has a family member suffering from mental illness will find this booklet helpful. It explains what mental illness is, the different kinds of mental illnesses and their symptoms. It also looks at the causes of mental illness and the impact that it has on other family members.
Samaritans Mental health services
Someone to talk to
Most young people have problems or worries. If this happens to you then you need to talk to someone. You will start to feel better once you have told somebody what’s going on and taken the first step to finding help.
If you feel you cannot talk to your parents, carers of friends support can be found by asking a teacher, doctor, youth worker or school counsellor, have a look at the Childline website, where you can find out information, or contact an adviser to talk about what is on your mind or what you are worried about. The ‘worried need to talk’ booklet produced by the NSPCC also contains useful information if something is on your mind.
Your lifestyle has a big affect on how you feel and what you get out of life, now and in the future.
Go to the Sport Hampshire and Isle of Wight for local sporting clubs and contacts.
E.volve is a directory of local sports clubs.
You Go For It is full of advice, sport stars, video competitions, blogs and podcasts. They give help, support and advice on looking after yourself, eating the right food and taking exercise and tell you why it is so important to your life right now.
Peer pressure is feeling like you have to do something just because all your friends are doing it. It's OK to say no and make your own choices. Did you know many young people face the challenges of peer pressure. Examples of this can be feeling like you have to:
- Wear the same clothes as your mates
- Drink alcohol, smoke or take drugs
- Change your friends because your other mates don't like them
- Bunk off school
- Have a boyfriend or girlfriend
- Start having sex.
Just remember real friends will not try and change you, they will accept you for who you are, they will not ask you to do things you are not comfortable with. If you feel the pressure of your peers please tell someone. Talking can always help.
We all have many different types of relationships with people every day. All relationships can have their ups and downs.
It's important to know how to build appropriate relationships. The way you behave with your friends will be different to how you are with your family, teachers, work mates or strangers, for example. Try to treat people in the way that you would like to be treated by them.
Your social life may well resolve around your friends and what you do together. Some people find making friends a lot easier than others, and some prefer to have a couple of really good friends instead of loads of mates. Childline can help if you've got worries or need advice.
Having relationships with your family can provide you with support and guidance through out life.
However sometimes in life, relationships with your family members can get difficult. This can make it awkward to talk to them about things.
Remember, there are no 'perfect' families, but some seem to get along better and some experience constant conflict or stress. Here are some tips to help you get along better at home:
- Talk things through. Your family members can't read your mind no matter how well they know you. Tell them if what they do upsets you or if you don't like the way you are treated.
- Keep your parents informed. Most parents nag you because they don't know what you're up to and are worried.
- Respect each other. You may not agree with your parent's rules and beliefs just as they may not like all yours. Try to remain calm & collected instead of lashing out and they will be more likely to respect what theyhave to say.
- Respect each other's privacy. Let them know you're not hiding anything, you just need a bit of time & space to yourself sometimes.
- Don't take it out on them. Family members bear the brunt of it when you are in a bad mood. Try hard not to always take it out on them and remember to do something nice for them regularly to show that you care.
Give yourself a break. If you're feeling stressed or angry, try doing an activity that you enjoy, maybe a sport. Or practice relaxation techniques in a quiet place. Your problems probably won't go away but it'll give you a chance to distance yourself from family members.
Sometimes it's best to speak to someone outside your family - a good friend, trusted teacher, youth worker or Personal Adviser. There's more information about family relationships on the Youth Information website.
If you are a young carer, sometimes you may need some extra support. Contact your local Young Carers Project for details on how they can make life easier for you or visit Young Carers.net to talk to other young carers.
Divorce is a difficult and emotional issue to deal with. Many young people have to deal with divorce.
Don't forget, you can always chat to a Personal Adviser at school or drop in to your local Connexions Centre if you are worried about how divorce or break-ups are affecting you.
For many people, partners, sex and relationships can be really hard to talk about.
You may be too embarrassed, worried or confused to talk to anyone close to you. But don't worry, all our Personal Advisers are happy to help you either in school or at your local Connexions centre.
If you are lesbian, gay or bisexual, you may find it difficult to discuss your sexuality with your friends and family.
FFLAG (Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) is a national voluntary organisation dedicated to supporting parents and their lesbian, gay and bisexual sons and daughters, with help lines across the UK, and useful links to resources. They produce two useful booklets 'How do I tell my parents?' and 'A guide for families and friends of lesbians and gays' which are available online. These are also available in Urdu and Hindi.
The following websites cover specific issues:
If you are under 18 and pregnant, or under 18 with a baby, and are confused about what benefits and other help you can get, please see the teenage pregnancy webpages or visit your local Connexions Centre. Most areas have a Personal Adviser who works specifically with young people who are pregnant or are new parents.
For advice and information on childcare contact the Childcare and Family Information Team (Cfit).
The internet is a great communication tool and can help you learn new things, get information, meet new people and have lots of fun.
Make sure you are safe by visiting the websites below:
Visit the new bullying pages on YouthTube.
Everyone has to deal with the death of someone close in their life at some time. Everyone copes with the loss of someone they love in different ways.
If you have recently lost someone you were close to and you need someone to talk to, please visit your local Connexions centre and talk to our trained Personal Advisers.
You may also feel that the advice being given to you on how to cope with your loss, is coming from all directions and is confusing. This can leave you feeling that nobody really understands what you are going through.
But there is real support out there for you. Visit:
You will be able to relate to a lot of things that are said and get ideas on how to cope with your grief.
- Action for Children
- Bullying UK
- Get It On
- It's Not Your Fault
- Sex and Young People
- The Surgery - Radio 1
People drink alcohol for all sorts of reasons. Many people enjoy alcohol and most of the time it is not a problem, but drinking heavily can damage your health, especially if you’re a young person.
Besides damaging the liver, heart and brain, heavy drinking can lead to loss of appetite, vitamin deficiencies, stomach ailments, skin problems, sexual problems and memory loss. After drinking too much people are more likely to have an accident, become involved in a fight or have unsafe sex. These are all unnecessary risks.
The talk about alcohol website has a load of quizzes, challenges and facts about alcohol which is worth looking at
Are you concerned about alcohol? Do you think you are drinking too much or are you worried about a friend or relative?
Check the following websites out for advice.
How much is too much? Find out on the Drinkaware website
People take drugs for all sorts of reasons. Because they think drugs can make them forget their worries, because their friends do, or because they think it might be fun. The Talk to Frank website is a great website for young people who want to find out more about drugs and the side effects of taking drugs.
However, taking drugs can become a habit. Some people depend on them just to cope with normal life. Their drug use is likely to have a serious effect on their physical and mental health. This is a really good guide that explains all of the facts and dispels many of the myths about drugs - The truth about drugs: know the score.
You might be offered drugs by your friends, or by people you know. Often friends know less than you do about drugs, but they may want to look as if they know everything. Don't rely on what your friends say. If you are feeling pressured into taking drugs by your friends, here's some advice about how to deal with it.
If you are worried about a friend or family member taking drugs, here's how you can help them..
Read, listen and watch interviews from young people about taking drugs on the Youth Health Talk website.
It is estimated that each year in England and 340,000 young people under the age of 16 who have never smoked before try smoking cigarettes. Every year around 200,000 children and young people start smoking regularly of these 67% start before the age of 18 and 84% by age 19 (source)
With all the talk about the dangers of illegal drugs, it’s easy to forget that you can buy one of the most widely used and highly addictive drugs at the corner shop.
Some people say smoking helps you cope with stress. Some say it’s a social thing, a way of relaxing with friends. Some people smoke because they are unhappy. Many say they wish they had never started.
To find out how much smoking costs, support if you are looking to stop smoking and for contacts for local stop smoking services visit the Smokefree website
Worried about yourself or someone else?
It's hard to know what to do if you’ve got a problem or are worried about someone you know.
Remember: You don’t have to manage on your own.
Talking to someone can help. It can help to share a problem and get advice. With help you can find a solution.
In danger? Being abused? Don't suffer in silence - call for help!Speak to somebody direct by calling During office hours (8.30am – 5:00pm) - you should contact Children's Services: 0300 555 1384
At all other times you should contact the out-of-hours Service: 0300 555 1373Hampshire Children’s Services has a team that is there to help you.
- In an emergency phone the police by dialling 999.
- Contact ChildLine
Stay safe out and about
The Suzy Lamplugh website has really good tips and suggestions for staying safe in arrange of situations, from travelling on public transport to going out for the evening. Why don’t you also do one of the personal safety quizzes to see how much you already know about staying safe.
- Tales of the road
Stay safe online
Mobile phone safety
- Keep your mobile out of sight
- try not to use it when you are out on the street
- use a security code to lock the phone so if it is stolen, no one else will be able to run up huge bills on your account
- if you are attacked for your mobile, give it up - it's not worth putting your life in any sort of danger for a phone
- don't forget, the jury's still out on whether overuse of mobile phones can have a long-term effect on your health.
Advice, support and treatment is available to all young people throughout the UK. Within your local area there will be clinics where you can access confidential advice and support. Please visit Let's Talk About It to see what services are running in you area and at what times.
Did you know many youth clubs will offer a sexual health service? This may involve advice and support, condom distribution, pregnancy testing and Chlamydia testing. Please note: All services are confidential unless you disclose you are at risk. If this happens the service has to report the disclosure.
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) groups have been commissioned by Hampshire and are running in many towns. Find out how to get in touch with these services in your area.
HIV and other STI’s:
Sexually transmitted infections (STI) are mainly passed from one person to another during sexual contact. There are at least 25 different sexually transmitted diseases with a range of different symptoms.
Individuals who are infected with STI's are more likely to get HIV than uninfected individuals, if they are exposed to the virus through sexual contact.
HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. It is a virus which attacks the body’s immune system. Within the UK there are many people living with the virus. It is important to wear a condom especially with partners you do not know and are unsure if they have been STI screened. If you would like to be tested for HIV and other STI’s please visit your local clinic. This information can be found on the Lets Talk about It website above.
If you are living with HIV or know someone how is and you would like help and support. Please contact your local clinic, doctor and they will be able to sign post you onto organisations which will be able to support you.
Pozitude has been designed by young people for young people, who are HIV positive.
- Get it On - Sexual health services in Hampshire
- NHS - Let's Talk About It: Sexual Health
- NHS - sex and young people
- How to find your local sexual health service
- Get It On: Your Guide to Sexual Health Services in Hampshire
- Rape Crisis
- E4 sex education
- Family Planning Organisation (FPA)