RECOGNIZING ANXIETY SYMPTOMS IN TEENS
Anxiety is an umbrella term with many different subsections. The most common types of anxiety disorders that can arise in teenagers are generalized anxiety disorder, separation anxiety, panic disorder and social phobias.
Anxiety is highly common in young people. It has been noted by a national survey that nearly eight percent of adolescents have an anxiety disorder in the United States. There are many ways anxiety can manifest in teenagers. All young people will experience stints of anxiety every now and then, as growing up is filled with many different types of challenges. That stated, not every teenager that experiences anxiety will go on to develop an anxiety disorder. Some teens, however, will experience more severe anxiety and this can be when the intervention or assistance of a mental health professional can be beneficial.
Signs & Symptoms
Though the below list may seem common for many teenagers, when several of the signs are exhibited, or they prove to be debilitating for the teen, it is important to seek help. Some of the common signs that can be exhibited in teens with anxiety are:
• Irregular sleep patterns
• Trouble concentrating
• Muscle tension
• Behavioral problems
• Excessive worry
• Fears specifically associated with social situations
The above are examples common signs of a young person experiencing extreme anxiety or an anxiety disorder. He or she may display any combination of the above examples, or any number of signs that are not specifically listed above. Each teenager is different and will experience anxiety in a unique way.
Anxiety is a normal reaction to stressful situations. Adolescence can be an incredibly challenging period of one’s life, filled with many different types of stressful situations. However, teenagers that suffer from overwhelming anxiety, when the teen is unable to properly function in his or her daily life, will greatly benefit from treatment. Learning tools and techniques to help cope with anxiety will be useful for a young person to learn to integrate and use throughout his or her entire life. At Pacific Teen Treatment, we focus on a variety of therapeutic approaches for adolescents with an anxiety disorder.
The treatment modalities that are used at Pacific Teen Treatment include, but are not limited to: talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT). Through DBT a resident will have the opportunity to learn mindfulness based skills to help regulate his or her emotions, by focusing on living in the present moment. CBT is a goal based therapy that works by using a problem-solving approach to change thinking patterns and unhealthy behavioral patterns. Talk therapy is held both individually and in a group setting. Pacific Teen Treatment works with each of its residents to create a tailored and unique treatment plan, catering specifically to each teen’s personal needs.
Additionally, Pacific Teen Treatment makes healthy lifestyle choices a priority, such as making sure to nourish its residents with healthy food choices and encouraging regular exercise. Practicing yoga and or meditation frequently is also encouraged, as offering a wide range of relaxation tools is helpful for a young person in treatment for an anxiety disorder. Employing heathy coping mechanisms to deal with anxiety into one’s daily life will be extremely beneficial to a teen’s treatment process, and thereafter. The skills learned during one’s treatment can become an integral part of a teens life, post treatment.
Every family in need of mental health treatment must select a program that will best suit the needs of their family. When one member of a family struggles, it impacts everyone in the family unit. In order to maximize the benefits of treatment we work closely with the entire family to ensure that everyone is receiving the support they need through these difficult times.
Seeking help is never easy, but you are not alone! If you or someone you know is in need of mental health treatment, we strongly encourage you to reach out for help as quickly as possible. It is not uncommon for many mental health difficulties to impact a person’s life, long term. Seeking support at the beginning of one’s journey can put the individual in the best position to learn how to manage themselves in a healthy way so they can go on to live happy and fulfilling lives.
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