Free online resource provides answers on what's normal, when to get help
TORONTO, Jan. 20, 2012 /CNW/ - A free new web-based resource lets parents and teachers better help children demonstrating unusual or worrisome emotions and behaviour, providing guidance as to whether they are a normal part of development or a potential mental health problem.
The ABCs of Mental Health is designed to answer questions about children's behaviour and provide advice about how best to respond. Designed for parents and teachers of school-aged kids (3 to 18), the tool was developed by The Hincks-Dellcrest Centre, a Toronto-based children's mental health treatment, research, and teaching centre. The project, which is funded by the Government of Canada's Social Development Partnerships Program, will officially launch on February 6th.
"Children today face challenges that were unheard of 20 years ago," says Andrew Reesor-McDowell, Director of The Hincks-Dellcrest Centre's Gail Appel Institute. "Research shows that 1 in 5 children have a mental health problem and would benefit from receiving help from a professional."
The ABCs of Mental Health includes sections on dealing with children who are worried, sad, self-harmful, angry, or defiant, as well as kids with poor social relations, unusual behaviours, eating problems, attention problems, or problems with substance abuse.
"The challenge for parents and teachers is to determine what behaviour is a normal part of development and what might be cause for concern," says Reesor-McDowell. "The ABCs of Mental Health can provide immediate clues about what might be happening."
Parents and teachers are offered ideas for promoting the mental health of children and adolescents, information about how children change as they get older, descriptions of behaviours that might indicate a problem, and practical suggestions for steps to take.
The ABCs of Mental Health is available at http://www.hincksdellcrest.org/abc.
ABOUT THE HINCKS-DELLCREST CENTRE
The Hincks-Dellcrest Centre is a non-profit treatment, research, and teaching centre offering a comprehensive range of mental health services to infants, children, youth, and families throughout Toronto. Each year, more than 8,000 children and families are helped through a variety of prevention, early intervention, outpatient, and residential treatment programs. More information is at http://www.hincksdellcrest.org.
For further information: