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  • Writer's picturegarycotterell

What’s happening to young people today?

Most young people experience normal developmental concerns and academic pressures that, at times, leave them feeling anxious, confused, angry, lonely, depressed, or overwhelmed.

Learners may want to consider psychological help under the following circumstances:

  • Where they feel the need to talk to someone who can provide an objective viewpoint.

  • If there is an overwhelming and prolonged sense of sadness and/or helplessness in their lives.

  • Where emotional difficulties make it hard to function at their best day to day.

  • If they feel that their actions are potentially harmful to themselves or others.

  • There are emotional difficulties in relationships with family members or close friends.

  • There is loneliness, a disconnection from others, or a feeling of “I don't fit in”.

  • Exam and test anxiety.

Typical 'worries' may include:

  • Bullying

  • School life

  • Academic achievement

  • Personal crises

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Suicidal thoughts

  • Stress management

  • Relationships with parents or family

  • Relationship breakups

  • Sexual abuse, assault, date rape, identity

  • Health or HIV/Aids

  • Alcohol or other substance problems

  • Anger or low self-esteem

  • Weight, eating habits and diets

  • Unplanned pregnancies

  • Grief

  • Loneliness

  • Time management and study skills

Should any of these issues resonate with learners or if they are experiencing other psychological concerns, an appointment to consult with a Clinical Psychologist is important in dealing with any of the above matters.


Why a Clinical Psychologist?

It provides an interaction between two people in which one individual shares their concerns with another who is trained in the field of Psychology. Counselling can be instrumental in the development of skills that help people effectively confront and cope with their worries, uncertainties and conflicts. Through sessions with a psychologist, a young person can clarify his or her thoughts, feelings, and behaviours.

A clinical Psychologist is registered with the Health Professionals Council of South Africa (HPCSA) and is bound by professional standards and ethics. A Psychologist is legally and ethically obligated to protect every clients right to privacy. All records are considered strictly confidential and release of information to any third party including family, parent, legal guardian, or outside agencies, without the consent or authorization of the client, unless consent is obtained or it is required by law.


What if a young person needs to be referred to a Psychiatrist or a General Practitioner?

Clients may need to be referred to a psychiatrist for psychiatric intervention, or a family Doctor for general health care. If a referral is necessary the Psychologist will discuss this with the learner and their legal guardian depending on their age. In terms of the Child Care Act a child over 12 years is legally competent to consent to any medical treatment (excluding surgery) without the assistance of a parent or guardian.

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