Sexual Health for young people with a learning disability

We can provide advice and support to help children and young people with a learning disability with the vital understanding of their emotions, boundaries, sexual health, personal hygiene and how to stay safe.

Learning Disability Nursing provides advice and support to children, young people with learning disabilities, their parents/carer(s) and the healthcare and education professionals they rely on.

Understanding emotions, boundaries, sexual health, personal hygiene and how to stay safe are vital for young people with a learning disability to remain independent. This knowledge helps to develop useful life skills and a positive and healthy attitude towards sexuality and well-being.

How can we help?

Once a child or young person is referred to us, we can provide education and support on subjects such as menstruation and puberty and around behaviours that may be described as ‘sexualised’.

Guidance and helpful information

Please check the website links provided which may give you some additional guidance around supporting your child when addressing issues around puberty and sexuality/sexual health. If your GP or another health professional is making a request for service to Children & Family Health Devon around a specific behaviour it can help if you download our ABC toolkits to record and describe the behaviours.

We will ask you to share this information with us once you have collected it, to support your request for service from us and the information will be very helpful when we complete our first assessment.

Toolkits and Strategies

The following toolkits are available to support you to record behaviours, sleep patterns and other information which will be useful in assessing what the support a child or young person requires:

  • Behavioural pack >

    This toolkit includes basic information and advice on behaviour. The pack will allow you to record information which is useful during a clinic assessment to allow the clinician to assess the help needed.

  • Sleep hygiene information and sleep diaries >

    This includes sleep hygiene information sheets to give you basic advice for promoting healthy sleep patterns. We only support families with severe sleep problems but this information is useful for all families and children.  The sheets here allow you to record information on sleep patterns and approaches which will be useful for the clinican when you attend an appointment with us. 

  • Independence pack >

    This pack includes a basic explanation of techniques which may be useful for a family and help to reduce anxiety. 

What happens next?

All requests for service are prioritised according to need and urgency, based on the information provided to us when the request is made. The urgency is defined by the service in discussion with the person who made the request for service and the child or young person’s family.

We aim to see all children and young people within 18 weeks of accepting the request for service. We will try, wherever possible, to start the assessment process prior to the first clinic appointment by asking parents/carer(s) or the child or young person to begin to record behaviours, sleep patterns and feelings where this is appropriate. This information will help inform our assessment.

Self referral

You can now self-refer your child into this service. For more information please view this guide on how to self refer.

For details of what the service supports and what supporting documentation you require for your referral, please view the request criteria page.

What is the process?

Location of Centres

We will arrange to see you at a location convenient to you or near to your home, which may or may not be listed below. You should not visit the locations below unless we have sent you an appointment and requested that you do. If you need help please contact us using the number on this page.


Children and Family Health Devon
Single Point of Access Team
1a Capital Court
Bittern Road
Sowton Industrial Estate
Exeter EX2 7FW


t: 0330 024 5321