Determining If Your Teenager Has Mental Health Concerns


Determining If Your Teenager Has Mental Health Concerns

It’s not uncommon for teenagers going through adolescence to experience mental health disorders. The stressors of a period where physical growth, formation of core identity traits, and rapid transition have many opportunities for these issues to occur. If they remain unaddressed, they can become a serious concern in later life. Proper diagnosis of adolescent mental health concerns can be challenging. Anxiety and mood swings are common side-effects of changing hormones. 

Determining If Your Teenager Has Mental Health Concerns

According to ongoing studies, nearly one in five of all young adults has been shown to suffer from a mental disorder. These disorders may include depression, social anxiety, ADHD, or any number of others. Approximately half of all substance abuse disorders have mental health disorders as a base. Identification of these can be achieved in some cases before the age of 14 and are frequently identified by the age of 24.

Thankfully, some clear signs can indicate if mental health concerns are occurring.

  • Periods of Depressed Mood lasting longer than a week
  • Increased and persistent disinterest in social interaction and favored activities
  • Volatile emotional outbursts that require little provocation
  • Unexplained weight change

These signs may indicate it’s time to see a mental health professional for help. The sooner that treatment is sought, the lower the potential severity of the condition.

Common Mental Health Conditions Experienced By Teenagers

  • Depression – 3.7% of all children of age eight to fifteen experience depression. Some research shows that by reaching High School, nearly 25% of students will show signs. Melancholy moods, anger, and extended periods of sadness are common signs.
  • Anxiety – This is the second most common mental health disorder experienced by teenagers. This term describes a range of conditions that include social anxiety, phobias, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and PTSD.
  • Eating Disorders – Nearly 15% of teenagers demonstrate signs of eating disorders. Typical eating disorders include anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, body dysmorphia, etc.
  • ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) – This condition has been identified as identifying nearly ten percent of children aged eight to fifteen. It often goes unidentified in younger patients and has only recently begun to get the attention it deserves.

These are the four most common mental health struggles faced by youth. Effective treatment is essential to helping them overcome these issues and grow into healthy adulthood.

How Treatment Can Help Your Child

Getting effective treatment for a mental health disorder is the first step. Less than half of young people with mental health conditions get the treatment they need. The consequences of untreated mental health concerns can be dangerous, even life-threatening. Of all suicides in the United States, almost 33% of them are between the ages of ten and twenty-five. If you’re experiencing worry that a member of your family is struggling with mental health concerns, contact your provider today. Taking action will help those suffering from this kind of issue conquer their concerns and live a long and healthy life. Reach out to your provider today!

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April is the founder of Prestige Mental Health and is a board certified psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP-BC) who is qualified to practice primary care and psychiatry. She is passionate about providing quality, compassionate, and comprehensive mental health services to children, adolescents, and adults. April specializes in psychiatric illnesses including but not limited to depression, anxiety, ADD/ADHD, PTSD/trauma, bipolar, and schizophrenia.