One in four of Lewisham’s young people experience depression, while more than one in ten experience anxiety, a new survey has found.

Community Waves carried out the three-month survey for Healthwatch Lewisham, asking more than 500 children and young people in the borough about their mental health.

The health watchdog has called for more support in schools, as many children and young people said their main concerns were exam stress and pressure at school.

This comes as one in five of the participants said they would "do nothing” or “block it out” if they experience any mental health issues.

In a series of recommendations, it called for education on mental health and wellbeing – including resilience techniques – as well as more support from schools.

“Many of them [children and young people] felt they wanted more support in school,” Folake Segun, chief executive of Community Waves, told the Lewisham Council health and wellbeing board.

“They felt that they would like to know who to go to and [for it to be] always clear who that person might be, and some forum where parents and teachers might have a conversation and understand the mental health issues,” she added.

The report also found young women self harmed more than young men, she said.

A Lewisham Council officer said there was a lot happening in schools in regards to mental health, with half of schools taking part in mental health first aid training.

The council had also applied to NHS England for two clinical posts for mental health in schools, one to cover the north and one to cover the south of the borough.

“There is  [also] a lot of work happening around trying to trying to develop psychological practice in community settings, but that is challenged by the resource that we have available where we are having to respond to more serious presentations of mental health and preventative work,” she said.

“We have submitted an expression of interest to NHS England to develop two teams mental health in school teams in the north and south of the borough.

“They will build on the small CAMHS (children and adolescent mental health service) work we are doing. At the moment it's just two clinical posts which is very limited to cover the whole borough,” she said.