A growing "worry gap" between the problems children actually face and the issues that most concern their parents could be putting young people at risk, believe experts.
Most parents of primary school children choose "traditional" concerns such as stranger-danger or bullying when asked what most worries them about youngsters' well-being, polling seen by The IoS shows.
AdvertisementYet records from the charity ChildLine show their most common calls from children relate to depression, self-harm or thoughts of suicide.
More than half of all parents polled by YouGov for the helpline picked stranger-danger as an issue that worried them, while two-thirds chose bullying.
Yet fewer than one in five parents identified mental health as something they would worry about with a child - despite it being the most common thing for which children seek help, the Independent reported.
Of ChildLine's 1.5 million phone calls and online counselling sessions last year, more than 42,000 related to mental health problems, suicidal thoughts or self-harm.
Mental health-related issues are also among the fastest growing concerns for UK youngsters.
In 2012 more than 16,000 children called ChildLine about self-harm, up 68 per cent on the previous year. There were 12,000 calls about suicide, an annual increase of 39 percent, and 14,000 calls about depression and mental health, up 19 percent.
Parents did not identify the impact of troublesome family relationships as a major worry, but this was the second most common source of concern for children and young people seeking help from ChildLine.
Almost 40,000 phone and online counselling sessions by the charity last year were about family relationship issues, such as parents getting divorced.
Two-fifths of parents were worried about their children accessing pornography - though this did not feature in the top 10 worries of children contacting the charity.