Adolescents contribute significantly to society. Their energy and passion add to the fabric of communities.

As GPs, we have a unique role to play in adolescent health and health outcomes.

This month, Dr Johanna Lynch shares some useful insights into considerations in adolescent mental health. 

Dr Lynch is a GP who has worked in suburban Brisbane (with short stints in Dalby and London). During the last 15 years she has developed an expertise in caring for adult survivors of trauma and neglect. She has post graduate training in grief and loss, trauma, neglect, attachment and sensorimotor approaches to trauma‐specific care. 

Dr Lynch currently teaches medical students in whole person care and vulnerability, teaches GPs (including Headspace GPs) and GP registrars nationally in mental health through the Australian Society for Psychological Medicine (ASPM) (where she is Education committee chair). She also runs online case consultations with rural GPs through both the ASPM and RACGP- Rural, and runs a multidisciplinary case consultation peer review group through the Mental Health Professionals Network.

Dr Lynch presented a webinar to RVTS registrars focussing on “Adolescent Mental Health”. You can listen to excerpts from the webinar here (16 min):

If you would like to explore this topic further, the references below may be of interest to you:

  1. Headspace
  2. Nadine Burke Harris TED talk
  3. Dowrick, C. (2004). Beyond depression: a new approach to understanding and management. London: Oxford University Press.
  4. Epstein, R. M. (2014). Realizing Engel’s Biopsychosocial Vision: Resilience, Compassion, and Quality of Care. The International Journal of Psychiatry in Medicine, 47(4), 275-287.
  5. Epstein, R. M., & Back, A. L. (2015). Responding to suffering.JAMA, 314  (24), 2623-2624. 
  6. Goldberg, D. (1992). A classification of psychological distress for use in primary care settings. Social Science & Medicine, 35 (2), 189-193. 
  7. Hutchinson, T. A. (2011). Whole person care : a new paradigm for the 21st century New York: Springer. (including Hutchinson, T.A., & Brawer, J. R. (2011). The challenge of medical dichotomies and the congruent physician–patient relationship in medicine Whole Person Care (pp. 31-43))