Anxiety a core issue in youth | Canterbury-Bankstown Express

Tue July 15, 2015


ANXIETY disorder is the most common mental health condition suffered by young Bankstown people helped by Headspace in its first four months of service.

More than 100 individuals, aged 12 to 25, have sought the free and confidential advice and support of up to 15 qualified and experienced specialists and benefited from more than 300 services in tandem with 15 state and national organisations.

Clinical and operations manager Tom Traae said the young people seen in Headspace Bankstown so far were of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

But anxiety disorder, in the form of general, social or performance anxieties and phobias, were the most common complaints.

Mr Traae said affected disorders, such as depression, was the second most common condition, followed by issues related to illegal drug and alcohol abuse.

All three were consistent with issues presented in other Headspaces.

People suffering with the crystal methamphetamine known as “ice” have sought help but most have issues with cannabis.

Clients enter as referrals from other social groups, schools or families or as walk-ins on their own.

In youth-friendly waiting and consulting rooms, nonjudgmental staff ask intake questions then set an appointment with a doctor for health issues, a psychologist for mental health issues, a counsellor for alcohol and drug issues, a vocational expert for employment, or a series of appointments with each.

Mr Traae said the young person “is in the driving seat” with the nature and duration of support and they can always return.

“We would like to be the provider of choice of mental health services for young people,” he said.

“We aim to help as many as we can in the best approach possible.”

Invited guests will attend the official opening of Headspace Bankstown on July 24.

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