Anxiety is on the rise in teenagers. According to the National Institutes of Health nearly 33% of adolescents between the ages of 12 and 18 will suffer from an anxiety disorder. There are many things that teenagers are currently facing that their parents and previous generations did not. These unique experiences escalate a sense of worry and anticipation in adolescents.

Some of the most common sources of anxiety for teens are:

#3 Expectations and Pressure to Succeed

Adolescents are facing increased pressure and expectation to find "success." Whether it is in sports, school, or social interactions today's youth often feel pressure to be "the best," or to stand out. If you're not first, you're last.

#2 Environment That Feels Unsafe

We live in a 24-hour news cycle. The world seems to be getting smaller, and through the internet and other news platforms today's teens are constantly exposed to traumatic stories and images. School shootings, global disasters, wars, and social dissent dominate the news cycle. With the rise of worldwide violence and reporting it makes sense that today's teenagers are afraid and feel a sense of vulnerability and unease.

#1 Social Media

#1 reason for anxiety in teens - social media

Teenagers are constantly bombarded with messages on social media platforms that directly influence their sense of self, and esteem. The comparative nature of social media leaves many teens feeling disconnected and unaccepted. The pressure to "fit in" is amplified when teens consume images and expectations expressed on social media. Bullying is present on social media and the internet, and teens can face those negative effects and judgments anywhere and anytime.

At Wingate Wilderness Therapy we help teens address anxiety by providing challenging experiences in which they can succeed and build self-confidence. WinGate's students have the benefit of working in a supportive group setting with peers, instructors, and clinicians. With these support systems firmly in place WinGate's program provides a safe environment in which students can grow and gain essential tools necessary to find healing and success moving forward.

About the Author:
Josh Nelson
Josh Nelson

Roots Intensives Director

Josh Nelson has a deep, and extensive background in...

Josh Nelson has a deep, and extensive background in wilderness therapy, having grown up around some of the very first wilderness...