Stress and teens seem to go hand-in-hand, considering the changes they’re undergoing physically and emotionally, as well as their educational demands. While stress is unpleasant, it isn’t necessarily a bad thing if teens experience it from time to time. However, when it happens all the time, it may be time to seek treatment at an adolescent treatment center in North Carolina.
When teens undergo these stressful situations, they help them learn coping strategies. Stress is also a mechanism for teaching teens how to face situations with strength, energy, and their fullest attention. In this guide, we discuss what you should know about stress and teens, as well as why that’s important.
Understanding the Signs of Stress and Teens
If you’re a parent or educator, you might notice stress and teens presenting in a variety of ways. These signs of stress often affect their decisions, body, and emotions. They may also cause mental health or behavioral problems, indicating the need for a teen intervention center. Here are some examples:
Changes in Behavior
If your teen is undergoing stress to any degree, that might present itself as behavioral issues. Examples include:
- Doesn’t want to participate in activities they typically enjoy, isn’t doing well in school, or refuses to go to school
- Drinks more caffeine, is using alcohol or drugs, or starts taking over-the-counter pain killers
- Eating more or fewer comfort foods than usual
- Has aggressive behavior
- Seems more anxious or nervous than usual
- Sleeps too much or too little
If your teen turns to drugs or alcohol to manage their stress, it’s essential to seek out an inpatient addiction treatment program.
When teens are experiencing stress, that could present itself as changes in their emotions. Here are several examples:
- Crankiness or moodiness
- Crying or feeling sad more often
- Doesn’t believe life is going the way it should
- Feeling down or hopeless
- Finds it challenging to relax
Physical Challenges or Changes
There are some situations where stress and teens cause them to experience physical challenges or changes. For example, you might notice that your teen:
- Doesn’t feel well – they describe headaches, jaw pain, shoulder pain, and stomach issues
- Gets colds or infections more frequently
- Has either gained or lost weight
- Struggles with dizzy spells, fast breathing, or panic attacks
- Has a change in their period
Your teen could experience a significant change in their thought patterns due to stress. For instance, they may describe thoughts such as:
- They’re having difficulty staying focused or concentrating
- It’s challenging for them to remember things
- They have trouble making decisions, planning, or staying organized
- They make errors in judgment or snap decisions
Understanding the Causes of Stress and Teens
There are several contributing factors to what connects stress and teens. Your teen might be taking classes that are more difficult than they anticipated, or they might be the victim of bullying. Many teens feel extreme pressure to do well in school, especially on their homework and exams.
Other causes for stress include if they’re experiencing relationship problems. Those issues could be with their boyfriends, girlfriends, or groups of friends. Moreover, if there’s fighting or the fear that those relationships could end, that causes a significant amount of stress.
If you’re parenting an older teen, you might notice changes toward the end of their high school experience. Those kinds of life changes as they leave one school and get ready for their next chapter in their life is extremely stressful for some teens. No matter if they’re getting ready to start a new job or attend university, those could both be triggers.
Not having enough sleep is another common cause of stress. They might want to stay up late watching videos or chatting with their friends on their phones. They might also be experiencing sleep issues because they’re thinking about a test, performance, or project at school.
Get Help at Foothills at Red Oak Today
Do you believe that stress and teens are causing many issues for your child? Are you noticing that this stress is becoming too much for them to manage? Your teen shouldn’t have to experience these issues without the best support. Now is the time to contact Foothills at Red Oak at 866.300.5275 to learn how to support your teen and help them develop coping mechanisms.