Reasons Teens go to Therapy
It often comes as a surprise to parents that young people of almost any age can benefit from therapy.
Popular depictions of therapy often involve adults dealing with major unresolved life issues that have plagued them for years. However, this represents only a fraction of the situations in which therapy can be useful. When therapy starts early, issues needn’t persist for life.
In addition to therapy centered on traumatic experiences, many other types of life challenges are made easier with therapy. Therapy is a supplement to a young person’s growing ability to manage difficult emotions. It helps them make choices congruent with their goals and values.
Let’s look at nine reasons why a teenager might go to therapy:
Between 2005 and 2014, the odds a U.S. adolescent would suffer depression rose by 37%. Many teens try to hide depression symptoms. Pervasive feelings of sadness and worthlessness can stop teens from enjoying life. Therapy helps them put feelings in perspective and reclaim their happiness.
80% of kids with a diagnosable anxiety disorder go untreated. Anxiety can make it difficult for young people to engage with peers – in social anxiety – or face nerve-wracking situations. Therapy helps teens learn to manage anxiety, bringing them relief and greater autonomy.
Teens may not have mortgage payments to make, but they can encounter enormous stress. Dealing with peers and relationships while charting a course to an adult future is a tall order. Therapy can accelerate the process of learning skills necessary to manage stress in a mature, healthy way.
4. Substance Abuse
Substance abuse in teens often arises as a result of untreated mental health concerns, which can include other items on this list. Peer pressure is also a major factor. Therapy can help teens face the underlying drivers of substance abuse, which helps them to achieve a drug-free future.
5. Low Self-Esteem
Many teens struggle with feelings that they “don’t measure up” academically, athletically, or in other ways. When these feelings persist without relief, they can develop into a negative self-concept. Therapy helps teens recognize their intrinsic worth and pursue their dreams in life.
6. Behavioral Issues
Behavioral issues such as “acting out in class” often stem from unresolved emotions that a teen feels overwhelmed by. Teens may use behavior problems as a way of getting noticed. Therapy helps teens recognize and articulate their needs, then develop a plan for addressing them.
Teens’ earliest experiences with grief can shape them for the rest of their lives. Facing the loss of a grandparent, for example, may be devastating. Even the loss of a beloved pet can have long-term effects. Therapy allows teens to keep the natural grieving process on track.
8. School Issues
Declining grades can signal a problem that therapy may help with. Many teens who experience a sharp drop in grades have undiagnosed Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), dyslexia, or an ongoing mood disturbance. Therapy frees teens to discuss these sensitive topics.
9. Traumatic Events
Some teens have experienced life crises so profound, even a mature adult would not be expected to navigate them without help. These include issues such as sexual assault or being victimized by violent crime. It’s essential teens suffering from these issues get the help they need promptly.
Wilderness therapy is a powerful part of a long-term plan to provide teens with the personal resources they need. It augments traditional talk therapy by empowering teens in a safe, yet challenging environment where they can push themselves and achieve goals with peers.
To find out more, contact WinGate Wilderness Therapy today.