Essential To Address Mental Health Issues While YoungSometimes, parents can be tempted to engage in a “wait and see” kind of parenting when it comes to their teens. The hope is that given time, their teens will simply outgrow their emotional outbursts and associated bad behaviors. However, instead of outgrowing poor behavior, teens hiding mental health struggles can carry their maladaptive coping behaviors into adulthood. For example, say that your teenage son is struggling with depression. Some depressed teenage boys will lash out with anger to express their depression. So, without treatment, your teen boy may end up raging at family members and friends for years beyond the teenage years, as that was the only way he knew how to express his deep feelings of depression. These kinds of poor coping skills can be more difficult to change the longer they are used. So, it is critical that parents get their teens’ help for their mental health while their teenagers still live at home.
Signs Your Teen May Be Struggling With Depression Or AnxietyThere are a number of signs that parents can look for if they are worried that their teens are suffering from depression and anxiety. Even if your teen is struggling with other forms of mental illness, often these signs will also appear. Some of the most common signs are:
- Loses interests in hobbies, usual pastimes, and other things they once enjoyed.
- Appetite changes, whether overeating or loss of appetite.
- Aversion to social situations of any size or type.
- Low self-esteem, both expressed verbally and shown in poor hygiene.
- Mercurial moods swinging from sadness and depression to frustration, irritability, and anger.
- Substance abuse to self-medicate feelings.
- Change in sleep patterns, whether insomnia or sleep more than usual.
- Engaging in self-harm and suicide ideation, with potential suicide attempts.