Teenage mental health crisis fears as North West records highest levels of child self-harm

While much of the focus has been on the Coronavirus pandemic over the last 12 months, there's another crisis brewing, in the mental health of younger people.

Heather is just 13-years-old. She's been struggling with her mental health.

Thousands of young people are currently stuck on long NHS waiting lists .

However, the situation hasn't been caused by the pandemic.

It's an issue thats been slowly and silently building for years, but there are fears that the series of lockdowns and fears around coronavirus could have had an impact.

So what can be done to help? Mel Barham investigates the issue for our podcast From the North.

All episodes are also available to stream wherever you get your podcasts from.

Figures from the NHS show that in the last decade the number of children in the North West being admitted to hospital for intentional self harm has almost tripled.

The number of child admissions to hospital in the North West has almost tripled in a decade Credit: ITV

It means the North West has the highest number of admissions in the country.

Blossom Haus which is part of the Open Door mental health charity on the Wirral, has seen a 30% rise in teenagers through their doors Credit: ITV

One group that's trying to do things a little differently is the Open Door charity.

It runs a centre called Blossom Haus, which covers the Wirral.

At Blossom Haus there are no waiting lists, meaning anyone who needs help can get it straight away. The service is aimed at 11-16 year olds, while Open Door also offers support for anyone up to the age of 30.

They've been piloting a computer game to help young people.

If you have been affected by any of these issues, you can find help from the following organisations and charities: