The Castile-La Mancha College of Psychology has already warned that the mental health of young people has borne the brunt of lockdown, to the point of having to create guidance on anxiety, but the fact is that Castile-La Mancha is facing this pandemic without sufficient resources and with waiting list for which there is no delay.
There is only one device for the entire Sescam with hospitalization, the rest of the resources for youth and adolescents are outpatient
The pandemic and lockdown have exacerbated mental health pathologies that were already latent, but the reality is that in all of Castile-La Mancha, only Ciudad Real has hospitalization for teenagers and young adults, the rest of the region has only outpatient treatment.
In this context of lack of resources, queues and the suffering of young people and adolescents, parents helplessly see that they do not know how to cope with a situation that is beyond their power. In addition, a consultation with a psychologist at a private medical center costs about 60 euros, while a consultation with a psychiatrist can exceed 80 euros.
Constant visits to the emergency department eventually lead to a medical situation that requires an urgent response in the short and long term, which has repeatedly been brought to the attention of the Association of Neuropsychiatry and Mental Health of Castile-La Mancha (AEN-PSM).
Thus, AEN-PSM warned about the change last year. “In our autonomous community there is a well-established network of psychiatric institutions for children, adolescents and adults in various areas of health”, but which, according to this association, “is gradually undergoing deterioration and change in its functioning.
Pedro’s daughter is getting better, but she still remembers the anticipation of getting to Ciudad Real and the agony of the journey from Albacete. Other parents are tired of traveling from cities to outpatient hospitals, and most pay private funds to make up for it.
This situation has prompted families to band together around associations such as Alienta dealing with eating disorders or to try to share experiences to find solutions, as in the case of Maria, who opened the firstname.lastname@example.org email address to gather support.
In Maria’s case, her daughter became aggressive towards her and others, she dropped out of school and goes from euphoria to not being able to even get out of bed for several days.
“In 2020, domestic violence increased, physical attacks on me became more frequent, until I had to call the police and finally write a statement to the juvenile prosecutor’s office,” this mother writes in a letter sent to health diary.
The worst time has passed, and the situation of this family has remained the same or even worse. “Since 2022, my daughter has lost interest in everything, such as studying or socializing with other young people her age. (…) We spoke to the family doctor to refer her to a psychiatrist. The waiting list is endless.
“I write as a desperate mother who has been seeking help for her daughter for years. I know many parents who have the same or even more serious problems. We do not feel that we have been heard, supported or helped. We only ask for more sensitivity and empathy to deal with the minds of these future adults, because they too need to get rid of this suffering and lead a normal and balanced life. I invite all parents who had and still have the same difficulties to break the silence and write to me at email@example.com,” this mother asks.