Staying Healthy and Happy

Taking action to stay support your health and wellbeing helps you live life to the full while you are growing up
teenager talking to health nurse

Children and young people go through changes and challenges as they grow up. During this time they learn how to look after their own health - mental and physical - and get help when they need it.  

Lots of support is available to help you stay healthy and happy.

School nurses

School nurses help schools to keep their pupils healthy. You should know who your School Health Nurse is and where any drop-in sessions are.

Crucial: You can access the School Health Nurse Service even if you're not at school (for example, if you are home schooled, or during school holidays).

Your GP

Anyone over 16 can ask for treatment or advice without a parent or carer being with present. 

If you are under 16 your doctor can still see you but may need to speak to a parent or carer before giving treatments.

Take Action: If you’re over the age of 16, you can register with a GP by yourself. If you’re under the age of 16, your parents or carers will register you at a doctor’s surgery.

Health at home

Parents or carers are responsible for your health at home. They make sure you have what you need to be healthy. This includes things like enough food, a safe environment, warmth, clothes and not being exposed to things that will make you ill. It also includes access to medical care if you are ill or injured, immunisations, going to the dentist, and health check ups.

This is especially important when you are very little, but also when you are older.

When a parent does not provide these things, this is a type of abuse called neglect. Neglect can be very serious. Even if the parent does not mean to be neglecting their child, they need help to make changes, so that the child can be happy and healthy.

Crucial: A rare form of abuse is Fabricated or Induced Illness (FII) when parents or carers cause injury or illness in their child. This can take many forms, including giving their child too much, too little or the wrong medication, lying about symptoms to medical professionals, and encouraging their child to exaggerate minor illnesses and emotional problems or even make up symptoms. Children exposed to FII suffer in all kinds of ways; missing school, suffering health complications and emotional and psychological distress. Signs of FII include being taken to lots of different doctors or hospitals, being encouraged to miss school or activities for health reasons, and parents praising their children or being pleased when they are sick or ill. FII is a serious form of abuse, and if not stopped, can be fatal. Find out more about how to report abuse in Oxfordshire

Health when you leave home

When you leave home and start living with other people or in your own home, you become responsible for your own health. This means you need to:

You also need to have somewhere to live which is safe and supports health. This includes cleaning, safe cooking, clearing hazards from the household and keeping the house light, warm and free from pests and damp. You can practice all these skills by supporting your parents to look after their house, as you grow up.  

You can often find health services at your place of study or work too - this can include things like student health services, occupational health, counselling and advice services.

Find out more

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