Our Services

Children, Young People & Families Support

We focus on prevention and early intervention to improve the health and wellbeing of children and their families.

We deliver services to children and young people aged 0-19 and their families, or up to 25 if they have special educational needs.

The Parallel

The Parallel offers a holistic health and wellbeing service to young people who live in Bolton, attend a Bolton school or college, or have a Bolton GP.

We see young people up to their 19th birthday and in some cases up to 25th birthday if a young person is a care leaver or has special educational needs.

Our team includes nurses and a GP with special interest in adolescent health.

We provide a drop-in health and wellbeing clinic six days a week to address any issues a young person may have, including their physical, sexual, social and emotional health needs.

Opening times

Monday Tuesday
3:30pm to 6:30pm & GP appointments 2:30pm to 6:30pm
Wednesday Thursday
3:30pm to 6:30pm Appointment only
Friday Saturday (clinic) & Sunday (telephone only)
3:30pm to 6:30pm 12:30pm to 3:30pm

Outside of these times we can offer planned appointments and outreach. We also offer telephone, text and virtual consultations to all young people in Bolton.

We also provide specialist services including:

  • Holistic health assessments and care planning
  • Contraception including emergency contraception
  • Sexual health screening, including screening for blood borne viruses
  • Treatment for some sexually transmitted infections
  • Immunisations including unscheduled immunisations
  • General health and wellbeing
  • Targeted training or work with identified groups of young people and professionals in various settings
  • Weekly GP session for children and young people requiring specialist GP input
  • Targeted work with young people who are open to the following services:
    • Complex safeguarding team
    • Youth Offending Team
    • Leaving care
    • 360°
    • Young parents
  • Work with and support for LGBTQ+ young people.

360° Substance Misuse

Our 360° Substance Misuse Service provides specialist advice and support to children and young people (under 19 years old) with problematic substance and/or alcohol misuse.

In addition, we offer information and advice, to families, carers and professionals regarding substance and/or alcohol misuse.

The team can also deliver targeted group work in a variety of locations including schools, colleges, places of worship and residential settings.

What happens if you or a young person is referred to our service?

An Adolescent Health & Wellbeing Practitioner will work with a young person, focusing on identifying needs, assessing substance misuse and looking at strengths to develop a care plan that best supports them. This will enable young people to make a positive change in their lives.

We aim to work towards enabling young people to:

  • Reduce or stop their substance use.
  • Increase understanding of the effects and dangers of substances.
  • Reduce the risks they take.
  • Improve their physical and emotional health.
  • Support access to education, training or employment opportunities.

360˚ provides consultation and support via email, phone or face to face regarding any drug or alcohol concerns.

This may include best approaches in relation to a concern about a young person, a specific question about a substance or supporting a young person through referral to the service.

This is available to young people, families and workers.

It is our aim to teach parents and children the tools to cope with life’s challenges.

We can help families understand their situation, by first looking at what caused and what is maintaining it, before making a plan on how to meet their goals for change. We work with some people over shorter periods (a single session – six weeks) and some longer-term. It all depends on their individual concerns and goals.

We are a strengths based service which means we build on what is going well.

We believe that real change is made and sustained by empowering not shaming. When we work with a family it is on their terms – we are nurses – but our clients are the experts of their own lives.

Our Enhancing Families team are a small team of five nurses and one practitioner, with many years of experience in a variety of backgrounds. Our main role is to support health visitors and school nurses in the Children, Young People and Families service by providing them with training & supervision.

If appropriate we can do direct work with a family, which will be discussed and agreed with a member of our team.Across the team we are trained in a number of specialist therapeutic interventions and work closely with the Bolton Parent & Infant Relationship Service.

Any queries or requests for support for a family should be directed to the named SCPHN (health visitor or school nurse) in the first instance.

If any additional information is required regarding our team please contact: Enhancing.Families@boltonft.nhs.uk

Our Healthy Families team delivers a range of work to improve health & wellbeing of children, young people and their families. The team is split into two key areas for supporting families – prevention and intervention.

Our prevention strand work with parents and carers with 0-5 year olds and provides information, guidance and interventions in order to help achieve the best start in life, these include:

  • Infant feeding
  • Weaning
  • Eating well
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Oral health
  • Smoke free homes

Our intervention strand aims to provide specialist interventions to children, young people and their families, they cover:

  • SEN
  • Oral health
  • Healthy lifestyles
  • Foetal alcohol spectrum disorder
  • Gender identity

Our training and education work aims to deliver training, workshops and support to educational settings and the wider workforce on a range of health and wellbeing themes.

We also deliver the schools screening programme, ensuring that all children are offered, vision, hearing screening and height/weight measurements.

If any additional information is required regarding our team please contact: HF@boltonft.nhs.uk or call 01204 463175.

Our team bring together Specialist Community Public Health Nurses (Health Visitors and School Nurses), who are supported by Public Health Nurses and Public Health Assistant Practitioners, to offer a seamless family centred service to all children and young people, who either live in Bolton, or who attend formal education in Bolton.

The service is initially offered from 28 weeks of pregnancy, continuing right through until the end of formal education. This can be extended to the age of 25 for young people with additional needs, or who are being supported by the Leaving Care team. You can expect to see your health visitor at:

  • 28-38 weeks antenatal
  • 10-14 days’ post delivery
  • 6-8 weeks post delivery
  • 1 year of age for the child
  • 2/2.5 years of age for the child

You can expect to have contact from your school nurse for your child to be offered:

  • School entry health assessment
  • Health assessment in year 6
  • Health assessment in year 9

Immunisation team

Our Immunisation team will go into school and delivery vaccinations following parental consent at:

  • Year 9 Human Papilloma Virus 2 doses
  • Year 10 School leaver booster Diphtheria tetanus and polio

Topics

Below are a number of topics we cover to support children of Bolton and their families.

We can offer advice and support on a number of topics, including:

Behaviour

Parenting can at times be difficult and overwhelming and when you are dealing with challenging behaviour you may need additional support to look at positive strategies to support your child. Being a good role model, being calm and consistent, giving praise, positive attention, actively listening and avoiding negative discipline like shouting and smacking, all help with behavior.

Behaviour – Support for Parents from Action For Children

Dealing with child behaviour problems – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

Bereavement

Supporting children and young people through bereavement can be tough especially if you are grieving as well. Child Bereavement UK provides support and guidance for families and children.

Bullying & cyberbullying

Bullying can happen anywhere and to anyone and the impact can be huge. With more children and young people having smart phones, online bullying has increased.

Bullying can happen repeatedly and is any behaviour that hurts someone physically and emotionally; this can be name-calling, spreading rumours, hitting, undermining or threatening someone.

It is really difficult when your child is being bullied and sometimes we need a little extra help when dealing with it, there are lots of useful information at Anti-Bullying and NSPCC.

Exam Stress

Whether you are sitting ‘A’ levels, GCSEs or SATs it can be a stressful time but there are many ways to deal with it in a healthy way.

Maybe it is about taking time out and doing something you enjoy, eating well, talking to those you trust or going for exercise so why not have a look at these website links and find out more;

Healthy Relationships

Healthy relationships are important throughout a person’s life, whether it’s positive friendships with people who are there to support you, laugh and cry with you or as young people go through puberty more romantic relationships.

Understanding importance of positive and healthy relationships, which are equal, where there is respect and there is open communication is essential.

As a parent or carer we can help you on how to talk to children about healthy relationships.

If you are a teenager and want to find out more about relationships, Health for Teens has lots of useful information.

Self harm

Self harm is a difficult and worrying problem to talk about but it is something that people can overcome with support, if you are worried about yourself or a young person then speak to your GP.

Young Minds provides information about self harm for both young people and parents/carers.

Getting help

If you need support or help you can contact our Public Health Nurses on our CHAT Health is a confidential text line available Monday to Friday between 8am-8pm. Young people’s line is also available Saturdays 12pm -4pm.

  • Chat Health for parents: 07507 331751
  • Chat Health for young people (11-19): 07507 331753

Bedwetting

Bedwetting is a common problem and there are things that you can try at home that can help this, the ERIC website has some useful information you can also contact your local Public Health Nurse who will provide an initial assessment and advice and an onward referral if needed.

Potty training

It’s important to remember that every child learns at their own pace.

Potty training can take time, most children are ready to be potty trained between 18 months and 3 years, the ERIC website has a variety of information and tips.

They also have information to support parents and carers of children with additional needs.

Weaning

Weaning is an exciting milestone for you and your baby.

Most babies are ready for solid food at around 6 months of age but all babies are different and it’s important to look out for signs of readiness in your baby. Your baby will start to show three developmental signs that suggest they are ready for solid food.

Your baby is ready if they can:

  1. Stay in a sitting position and hold their head steady.
  2. Co-ordinate their eyes, hands and mouth so that they can look at the food, pick it up and put it in their mouth all by themselves.
  3. Swallow food. Babies who are not ready will push the food back out so they get more around their face than they do in their mouths.

Starting solid food is your baby’s first chance to explore lots of wonderful tastes and textures.  You can find about expert NHS advice, helpful videos, tips from other parents, and lots of simple, healthy weaning recipe and meal ideas, on the Start 4 Life website.

Infant feeding

Breast Feeding

Deciding to breastfeed can give your baby the best possible start in life.

Breastfeeding benefits you and your baby in many ways and it’s also is a proud tradition of many cultures.

Breast milk adapts as your baby grows to meet your baby’s changing needs. Breastfeeding and making breast milk also has health benefits for you.

Breast milk naturally contains the nutrition your baby needs. As your baby grows, the nutrients in your breast milk change.

This fulfils your baby’s changing nutritional needs. Breast milk is easier to digest than formula. It also is full of antibodies that help protect your baby from infections.

Formula Feeding

You can feed your baby breast milk or infant formula from a bottle.

If you choose to feed your baby using a bottle, he or she will need to learn how to drink from a bottle. It can take some time for your baby to get used to it.

Paced bottle feeding can be a good way of introducing bottle feeding and letting your baby take the lead. Using this method also reduces the risk of digestive upset, and means less wind. This helps your baby control their appetite and learn to recognise when they’re full. Paced bottle feeds puts your baby in control of the process.

We can offer you advice and support in the following areas:

Physical activity

Encouraging your children to take part in physical activity is incredibly positive; you can even do it together as a family.

There are many benefits of physical activity;

  • Better health
  • More energy
  • Reduced stress
  • Stronger bones and muscles
  • Better balance, strength, suppleness and mobility
  • Improved sleep
  • A sense of achievement

It doesn’t have to be expensive just a walk or run in the park, a game of football or tennis.

Sleep

Sleep is incredibly important for a child’s development both physically and mentally, developing positive sleep patterns are key to a healthy child

Children with good sleep routines are more able to meet their full potential in every aspect of their lives. These are just a few of the symptoms of sleep deprivation in children:

  • Growth or hormone issues
  • Concentration difficulties
  • Mental health issues
  • Lowering of the immune system
  • Hyperactivity
  • Weight gain
  • Behavioural issues
  • Difficulty remembering things

In the teenage years they still need sleep to help with learning and development but sleep patterns may change and it’s perfectly natural for them to go to sleep and wake later.

If you need support in relation to sleep you can contact our Public Health Nurses on our CHAT Health. This is a confidential text line available Monday to Friday between 8am-8pm

Young People’s line (11-19) 07507 331753

Oral health

To maintain the best possible oral health we recommend that you:

  • Take your children to the dentist when their first teeth come through or by the age of one at the latest to make the best possible start to their oral health journey.
  • Brush children’s teeth with a fluoride toothpaste twice a day, last thing at night and at least one other occasion. Spit out after brushing and do not rinse.
  • Reduce the frequency and amount of sugary food and drinks your children have.

Learn about your oral health, prevention and advice, mouth problems, treatments and procedures.

You can search for an NHS dentist near you on this site.

We can offer advice for some areas you might need support with as a parent.

First aid/accident prevention

NHS first aid is a great resource for information on a wide range of health conditions and advice on how to stay healthy, including basic first aid advice.

The Child Accident Prevention Trust has a wealth of information on how to keep children safe from harm around the home and when out and about.

Safety equipment

Staying one step ahead of babies and young children to keep them safe can be a constant challenge for the adults around them. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents has lots of advice on safety equipment for around the home.

Safe sleeping

The Lullaby Trust is a very useful website for parents giving advice for safer sleep for babies and support for families.

Internet Safety

Childline has a wealth of practical advice for young people for ways to protect themselves from harm online, from tips on protecting their privacy to how to approach an adult for help if things go wrong.

Safeguarding

Bolton Council’s safeguarding team will guide you through any issues or worries you have about keeping babies, children and young people safe.

Sexuality

Sexuality and sexual orientation is all about who someone is physically and emotionally attracted to. An understanding of sexual orientation develops through puberty. It can be a confusing time and you need to know that it’s ok not to be sure.

There are a range of terms used to describe sexuality. Here are few:

  • Lesbian or gay: when girls are attracted to other girls
  • Gay: when boys are attracted to other boys
  • Straight or heterosexual: when boys or girls are attracted to someone of the opposite sex
  • Bisexual: when someone is attracted to both sexes
  • Asexual: when someone doesn’t feel sexually attracted to anyone
  • Questioning: when someone feels unsure about their sexual orientation

You can find out more definitions by visiting ChildLine.

If you want to find out more about LGBT+ then visit the home of LGBT+ youth.

Gender Identity

When someone is born it’s decided whether they are a girl or a boy by the way they look on the outside. For some people how they feel inside their does not match the way they look on the outside – this is called gender dysphoria and can feel very confusing.  It is ok not to be sure!

For some people this may lead them to identify as transgender, when their gender identity is different from the one given at birth.Cisgender is when a person’s gender identity is the same as given at birth.

Someone might identify as non-binary person where they do not identify as male or female, they can identify as male and female, neither, or their gender can change.Some children are aware of this difference and may share this with their family at an early age.There is support for available from Mermaids and Gender Identity Development Service.

Getting Help

In Bolton the Proud Trust run a support group for LGBT+ young people.

Alcohol

Alcohol is the most widely used drug in the world, how it makes you feel depends on your mood before drinking so you might be relaxed and happy, sad or angry.

It effect’s the way the brain works so everything slows down with users more likely to have accidents or not be able to keep themselves safe.

Too much alcohol can affect all parts of the body and mental health. There are lots of really useful information about alcohol for young people on the Health for Teens website and if you are a parent you might want to visit the NHS common questions webpage.

Pregnancy & Alcohol

We know that alcohol and pregnancy do not mix and the best way to keep your baby safe is not to drink #Drymester is there to help parents to be go alcohol free.

Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)

Too much alcohol in pregnancy can cause damage to the developing baby when this happens, this may lead to a diagnosis of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.

This is a long term disability, and they may need support with motor skills, physical health, learning, memory, attention, emotional regulation, and social skills.

The Healthy Families team supports parents, carers and schools where there is a diagnosis of FASD.

There is more information available on https://nationalfasd.org.uk/   and https://fasd.me/

Smoking and Vaping (using an e-cigarette)

Whilst the majority of adults and young people know that smoking is very bad for your health, not to mention your bank balance, it’s not always easy to know where find reliable information.  There is also a great deal of misinformation around vaping.

The evidence is becoming increasingly clear that whilst it is not a good idea for someone who has never smoked to take up vaping, for an established smoker, an e-cigarette can be a very useful way to cut down on the health harms associated with smoking or to quit smoking completely.

The NHS offers a range of assistance, including online help, an app and text message support for those wishing to quit smoking via Smokefree.

Pregnancy and Smoking

If you are pregnant it is important that you quit smoking and do not allow anyone to smoke in your home or near you when you are visiting others.

Smoking in pregnancy is known to increase the risk of miscarriage, premature birth, low birth weight, stillbirth and the sudden death of a baby before the age of one year.

Children whose mothers smoked whilst they were pregnant are also at increased risk of a range of health problems including breathing difficulties and ear, nose and throat conditions.

For free advice and assistance to quit smoking whilst pregnant, please ask your midwife or health visitor to refer you to the Maternity Services Specialist Service or you can always contact them on 07827992883 or email specialistservice@boltonft.nhs.uk.

Drugs

The decision to take an illegal drug is not without risks and nobody should feel pressured to do so. You can speak to your school nurse or contact CHAT health on 07507 331753 if you feel like you are in this situation.

The following websites are really useful for more information about drugs:

Getting help

If you are a young person who would like some help with their drug or alcohol use, or you are an adult worried about a young person then you can contact our 360° Substance Misuse Service on 01204 462444.

If you are an adult you can contact Achieve Bolton Substance Misuse Service on 01204 483090.

For most young people, interest in sexual activity begins with puberty. Many young people find this a confusing time, so it is important that they have access to advice regarding the wide range of sexual health issues.

Contraception

Contraception refers to the methods that are used to prevent pregnancy.Contraception is free from the Parallel up to the age of 19 and there are lots of options available.

If you are thinking about becoming sexually active or you are having sex already it is important that you have all the right information to make safe choices, and an opportunity to discuss all of your options.

Emergency Contraception

There is emergency contraception that can be used after unprotected sex to protect you from pregnancy.

The emergency contraceptive pill is available at The Parallel and can be obtained at one of our confidential drop-in clinics. It can also be obtained from your GP, some local chemists and the Bolton Centre for Sexual Health

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)An STI, or sexually transmitted infection, is any kind of bacterial or viral infection that can be passed on through unprotected sexual contact.If you think you may have symptoms we would advise that you attend one of our drop in clinics at The Parallel or the Bolton Centre for Sexual and Reproductive Health.

Pregnancy advice and options

If you are pregnant and if you are less than 24 weeks pregnant there are three options available to you and you have the right to choose any one of them.

For some people, making a decision about pregnancy is easy and for others, it might be difficult. The most important thing is to talk to someone as soon as possible.

Getting help

Young people can access The Parallel on 01204 462444 and people of all ages can contact their GP or the Bolton Centre for Sexual Health.

Housing & benefits

If you need additional support for housing and benefits Bolton Council have lots of information that is really useful.

Childcare

Bolton Council also have information about childcare, funded places and a childcare searches.

Food banks

If you need access to food banks there are places across the Bolton that you can access;

Service locations

We cover all community locations across Bolton

Key contact numbers

Chat Health for parents

Tel: 07507 331751

Chat Health for young people (11-19)

Tel: 07507 331753

Adolescent Health & Wellbeing

Tel: 01204 462444

Healthy Families

Tel: 01204 463175

Public Health Nursing

Tel: 01204 462325