First appointment with CAMHS; what to expect?

I am 100% sure I did a blog to cover this, but I’ve realised I’ve not! 

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So you’ve had the assessment with CAMHS, and it went okay and you’ve been offered regular appointments. What will you expect? What are they going to be like? What will we do in them?

What will you expect? 

The first appointment is normally calm and about getting to know YOU. You will be allocated a CAMHS worker, who will work with you. He/She may be different to the one you met at the initial assessment. But they will still want to help you. So the first session is basically an introduction session, they may ask about who’s in your family, what subjects you do at school, what you enjoy/what your interests are. And they’ll do what they can to make you feel comfortable. So that’s what you may expect in the first appointment. Something that’s light and not too heavy. But obviously if you want to talk about things that are bothering and worrying you, you can also do that. 

What are they going to be like?

Every session will differ like I’ve said above, the first session would be more light and more with getting to know you as a person. As the sessions move on you may feel as though things are a little harder to talk about, but you will never be pressured or forced to tell your CAMHS worker everything straight away, it takes time to build up trust and you have to form a relationship. Some sessions may be more focused on your family and how you get along with them, while others may be about how you’re feeling, what’s on your mind, if you want to talk about anything.

What will we do in the sessions?

Every CAMHS worker is different, you’ll have family therapists, play therapists, CPN’s, psychiatrists, etc and each of them work differently.

I’ll put an example in; in my first session at CAMHS I didn’t really want to talk, so my worker got paper and pens, and we done a spider diagram on how I was feeling, what I want to change and what I would like to be different, and what I’m expecting to get out of CAMHS. 

This made me feel comfortable, and other sessions would be sitting down and generally talking (but doodling was fun! Bare in mine I was 17 at the time). When you get to know your CAMHS worker, feel you’re able to trust them and have built up a relationship; you’ll find it much easier to speak about what’s bothering, you’ll be able to have a laugh and it will generally help you as you’ll be wanting to be better.

CAMHS will only work if you do. What I mean by this is, if YOU don’t want to change, or if YOU don’t want to engage in the sessions, it’s not going to help you. It’s not the service which aren’t helping, it’s yourself. Whereas if you’re willing to change and engage in the sessions you’ll see it helps a lot! See my blog on ‘Has CAMHS helped?‘ 

I wish you all the best, and if you wish to see anything else, or want anything added/explained more, don’t hesitate to contact me :)  

 
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