Therapy for Teens
Is your teen under a lot of stress? Do they not seem as happy as they once did? Are they suffering from an eating disorder? Do you suspect they are using drugs?
Most of us remember our teenage years as a combination of great fun, burgeoning freedom and a tremendous amount of stress. During this time our hormone levels are skyrocketing, making us feel emotionally out of control. We also feel a greater need to perform well academically and fit into social circles. All of this stress can take its toll on a teen’s mental health and overall well-being.
Common Life Challenges Among Teens
Teens can often face some serious life challenges that impact their mental health and well-being.
- Loss – Loss can come in the form of a death of a loved one, including a pet, and it can also come in the form of parental separation or divorce. Loss also happens when a family moves to a new location and the teen must go to a new school.
- Stress – A little stress is normal in life and can even be motivating. But too much stress can cause burnout at any age. Many teens face tremendous amounts of stress to do well in school, hold down a job, and be accepted by their peers.
- Violence – Teens that are bullied at school or at home suffer, and often alone. If not dealt with, the aftermath of violence can result in PTSD symptoms.
- Self Harm – Teens can and do intentionally damage or injure their bodies to find relief from a variety of feelings and situations. This can be scary for parents but is something we can explore with the teen.
This is not an exhaustive list of reasons why a teen may want to speak with a therapist by any means. If you think your teen could benefit from therapy, please reach out to me.
What Are Some of the Best Types of Therapy for Teens?
There are three general types of therapy for teens experiencing mental health issues:
In these private, one-on-one sessions, a therapist will typical use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to help the teen make a connection between their thoughts and feelings, as well as understand how these impact their behaviour.
Group therapy can be very effective because it allows teens to see how their peers handle their problems. Most groups have five to seven teens and one leader who will ask questions and guide the conversation.
In this scenario, the teen would go to therapy with their parent(s) and sometimes even with siblings. This style of therapy can be very beneficial as it allows the family to communicate effectively and respectfully.
Which type of therapy will be best for the teen will be determined by a trained therapist. Often, he or she will use a combination of all three of these types of therapy.
If your teen is struggling right now and could benefit from therapy, please reach out to me.