Teens Grappling with Mental Health Challenges More Than Ever Before
March 2 was World Teen Mental Health Awareness Day. According to the Adolescents Wellness Academy, recent studies indicate that approximately one in five teens between ages 12 and 18 suffers from at least one diagnosable mental health disorder. Approximately 50% of all lifetime cases of mental illness will develop before the age of 17.
These numbers are rising. Why? There are a few factors that have been found to contribute to the rise:
Busy schedules and pressure to succeed. Teens are often pressured to be at the top of their class or the best athlete at the school. This can cause stress and lead to mental health issues.
Social media. This is a big one! While social media can be a place to share your life and connect with others, it is also a dangerous place. In recent years, there has been growing concern about the effects of social media on the developing brains of teens. Research indicates there is a strong link between heavy social media use and teen mental health problems. Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and the latest addiction, TikTok, might put pressure on teens by putting forth unattainable body images, status symbols or other successes attainable by only a select few.
Underdeveloped coping skills. Some teens have not developed strong coping mechanisms and might not know how to react to triggering events. Oftentimes when this happens, they tend to cope with risky behaviors such as drugs and alcohol.
Relationship difficulties. Whether it’s a friendship or a romantic relationship, teen relationships are often weighed down by stress, which can cause mental health issues. If young people do not know how to cope properly, it can result in anxiety and/or depression.
How can I help my teen?
You might be thinking, “How can I help my child?” Here are a few things you can look out for and steps to take to support them.
- Notice their symptoms. Pay attention to their mood, behaviors and emotions.
- Learn all you can about their mental health condition. The more you know, the easier it will be for you to handle certain situations.
- Work with their school to ensure they have the resources they need. Your child spends most of their days and hours at school, so you want it to be a safe place for them.
- Work with your teen to help them find a “new normal.” Let them know that you are there every step of the way.
- Seek help for them. Getting help is not a bad thing and is not a sign of weakness. Partnering with a trusted professional can be the start of a new beginning with a healthy trajectory.
Meet Dr. Paul Wright
Are you looking for a partner dedicated to a holistic approach to mental health? A practice that embraces leading-edge approaches that explore how biology and personality factor into navigating and overcoming life challenges?
Dr. Paul Wright is the founder of IntegrityMind Psychiatry. He offers Holistic Help for the Whole You. Dr. Wright is a medical doctor with specialization and double board certification in General Adult Psychiatry and Child/Adolescent Psychiatry. Additionally, he holds a master’s degree in Public Health.
Dr. Wright offers flexible options for both in-person sessions and secure online sessions. Offices are in Grapevine and Plano, Texas. IntegrityMind works with children, adolescents and adults with an interconnected approach for families. Dr. Wright’s unique approach to helping patients is refreshing, rooted in science, compassionate, comprehensive and hopeful.
Practical Help for a Better Life
At IntegrityMind Psychiatry, we know that people are wonderfully unique, with their own life map and personality. So we don’t over-focus on a specific diagnosis or rush to label people. While a diagnosis can be helpful in gaining a better understanding of a condition and finding the right treatment, our focus is less on a label and more on practical help for an improved life.
Dr. Wright sees people for help with issues including:
- Addiction Issues
- Navigating Life Transitions
- Relationship Challenges
- Bipolar Disorder
At the heart of serving your teen’s mental health needs, we strive to offer help. And hope. IntegrityMind is Holistic Help for the Whole You. If you know a young person who is struggling, we’d be honored to help. Please reach out to schedule an initial consultation.