AMHERST, Mass. (Mass Appeal) - Between homework, a social life, and pressure to fit in, life can be tough for teenagers to handle. Clinical Psychologist Tim Hope joined us to share some tips on how to manage anxiety and depression in teens.
What is anxiety?
Anxiety is normal but a clinical anxiety disorder is when fears or worries become so significant that they interfere with the teen's life at home, socially, or at school.
Anxiety disorders occur in approximately 15% of teens at some point in their adolescence
Anxiety disorder are characterized by physical symptoms, thoughts, and feelings, as well as behaviors, such as agitation, wringing hands, picking skin, etc.
Anxiety disorders are very responsive to treatments, often cognitive behavioral therapy, medication, or some combination.
What is depression?
Depression in the form of feeling sad or blue or down for a period of a few hours or a few days is also normal and common. Clinical depression is when sadness, hopelessness, helplessness, sleep changes, appetite changes, and other symptoms last for a couple of weeks or more and they interfere with a teen's home life, social life, or school.
Clinical depression occurs in approximately 20% of teens at some point in their adolescence.
Clinical depression is also very responsive to treatments, including cognitive behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, medication, or some combination.
Teens often try to use things available to them to cope, including talking with family, friends, or school or church personnel. However, some try to "self-medicate" through the use of substances or alcohol. Some hurt themselves on purpose or have suicidal urges. Such behaviors are to be taken very seriously and help can be found through the teen's doctor, school counselor, or clinical psychologist or child and adolescent psychiatrist.