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Would A&E be able to get mental health help for a child?

(5 Posts)
whatonearth99 Thu 07-Mar-19 19:37:38

Posting for traffic.

My son has several diagnoses. He's oppositional and defiant, angry and anxious. He is only 11.

Tonight he tried to escape the house and we blocked the doors. We have previously had a police helicopter out looking for him when he ran away.

He went into the kitchen and grabbed two knives, presumably to try to intimidate my partner into moving out the way of the door. I was obviously terrified and shocked and screamed at him to put them back into the drawer immediately, which he did.

We are out of our depth, my child needs help. Will a&e help us? I don't want to call the police and get even a mention of a knife on his record but I will if that's what we have to do to get help. I'm on the brink of losing my job due to him refusing to go to school frequently, basically life has gone to shit since secondary school started in September.

Tookal Thu 07-Mar-19 19:40:59

In short yes.
A+e can refer to a mental health nurse to come and assess. However this will be very much centered on short term eg. Is he at risk tonight and require immediate medication or hospital rather than long term.

That said they can usually refer to cahms if he is not open already?

whatonearth99 Thu 07-Mar-19 19:43:23

He has calmed down now, my partner has managed to calm him and talk to him and now he's just back to being his "normal" self!!

We are waiting for CAMHS but they've told us they can only focus on one issue at a time; they're going to try to help him with his anxiety.

I've contacted private psychologists but the trouble is that he just refuses to go to things so I don't know how we will force him to engage! Just completely at the end of my rope, I don't know how life has become this way sad

aymb Thu 07-Mar-19 19:47:22

I'm sorry to hear this as it must be an extremely difficult situation for you.

Yes, Accident and Emergency would be able to triage for an assessment by a Mental Health Practitioner. However, that's only if there is an appropriate professional / team available at the time and you may have to wait a number of hours, which I can imagine would be stressful for you and your son.

Alternatively, you can make telephone contact with your local Mental Health Crisis / Home Treatment team? If you Google the available Crisis team number in your area, they may be able to offer assistance over the telephone / complete a home visit at the earliest opportunity.

I hope this helps slightly!

SusanWalker Thu 07-Mar-19 19:52:01

I have taken my son to a and e when he's been suicidal. They will contact camhs and ask them what they are doing, which can speed things up.

Taking DS to a and e is in his care plan for when camhs is closed and he's suicidal. They put him in a private room and keep him safe until the urge has passed. He has stayed in overnight before and then you see camhs in the morning before you leave.

Don't be afraid to call the police. They will do a risk assessment and refer to any agencies that may be helpful, including camhs.

Also I would call camhs in the morning, tell them he's on the waiting list but needs to be seen as a priority. Tell them what has happened. They will have heard it all before. My son's psychiatrist is lovely and very reassuring, telling my son that lots of people feel that way and that he's not abnormal, but just in need of some help. Tell them you need them to assess him and draw up a care plan as you need to know how best to keep him safe.

flowers for you. It's really tough, I know.

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