Mental health crisis: NHS warning over eating disorders and self-harm

Almost one in five children aged seven to 16 have a probable mental health disorder according to the latest NHS research.

The Mental Health of Children and Young People in England 2022 study (Newlove-Delgado et al, 2022) has raised particular concerns about eating disorders, problems with sleep, and incidence of self-harm.

Overall it finds that 18% of seven to 16-year-olds have a probable mental health disorder, with this figure rising to 25.7% of 17 to 19-year-olds – one in four.

The figure for seven to 16-year-olds is broadly in line with 2021’s iteration of this research (17.8%), however the 17 to 19-year-old figure has risen sharply since last year when it stood at 17.4%.

And these are all notable rises from 2017, when the study was first carried out and when 10.1% of 17 to 19-year-olds and 12.1% of seven to 16-year-olds had probable mental health conditions.

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