Are you concerned about your teenage son or daughter, aged 15 to 18?
Common problems teenagers struggle with include:
abuse of drugs and alcohol
mood disturbances such as depression and anxiety
self-harming behavior such as "cutting"
anti-social behavior like lying, stealing, or cheating
cellphone or internet addiction
the beginnings of serious mental illnesses, including bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia, and borderline personality disorder
At Front Range Treatment Center, we see teens aged 15-18. Contact us today to schedule a free phone consultation, to see if we can help.
It is common for families with teenagers to experience some degree of family conflict. As children mature into young adults, part of that process is learning to separate from one's family and become more independent. This process sometimes involves conflict as teens test boundaries, act with more independence, and fight against restrictions. Often, teens have poor judgment about their abilities and maturity level.
Sometimes, the level of family conflict becomes more than teens and parents can handle on their own. Under these conditions, either party may make poor decisions, or act in hurtful ways. At Front Range Treatment Center, our psychologists are experienced at treating teens and parents, both separately and together.
Drugs and Alcohol Use
Teenage abuse of alcohol is very common. According to the CDC, there is a 1 in 3 chance your high schooler has drank alcohol in the past 30 days, and over 4000 teens die each year from binge drinking. According to the NIH, about 6% of high school seniors are daily marijuana users. Teen marijuana use has been linked to poor cognitive performance, poor academic performance, increased mental health problems, alterations in brain functioning, and even structural changes in brain development.
Depression and Anxiety
Mood disturbances are very common in the teenage years. Teens may report feeling, sad, empty, and hopeless. Often, depression manifests in teens as low self esteem, or anger. Anxiety and panic attacks can occur in teens as well. Young people also tend to have a more difficult time understanding they have a condition that is treatable. Depression and anxiety treatment for teenagers may be able to help.
Cutting, Self-Harm, and Threats of Suicide
Many teens hurt themselves, often by cutting or burning their arms or legs. These self-harm behaviors are a serious symptom of an underlying mental health condition. In addition, each year about 17% of high schools consider suicide, and 8% attempt it. There are effective treatments for these behaviors. One of the most effective is dialectical behavior therapy.
Antisocial, Impulsive, Rebellious, or Disobedient Behavior
Anti-social behavior in teens includes arguing and fighting, drug use, risky sexual behavior, truancy, and lawbreaking. Often, young people go through a period where they refuse to conform their behavior to the expectations of others. For many this represents a temporary phase, but failure to quickly grow out of that phase can have lasting implications- social, academic, and occupational.
Bullying is repeated, aggressive behavior intended to cause someone physical or emotional pain. Bullying is very common amongst teens and preteens. If your child is the victim of bullying at school it is important to intervene in multiple ways. It is important to notify authorities who can address the bully, but it is also important that your child learn ways to respond that maximizes their ability to protect themselves, physically and emotionally. We can also help if your child has been bullying others.
Teens today are living in a different world than their parents. Many teens spend hours on the phone, tablet, or computer each day. The human brain continues to develop until about age 25, and it is unknown what effects such use has. Excessive screen time has been linked to negative outcomes, including depression and suicide. It can interfere with school performance and normal social interaction. Teens are also exposed to more harmful material at an earlier age, and sometimes engage in risky and illegal behavior such as sexting. Reducing the use of electronics can be difficult, but there are techniques that have proven beneficial.