Helping parents reach out to troubled teens…
Adolescent Behavioral, Emotional And Mental Disorders
The statistics show that one in every five teenagers has either a behavioral, emotional or mental disorder severe enough to create problems in their normal adolescent development.
Nearly two thirds of these teenagers with at least one of the most common disorders, which include among others…
- Oppositional Defiance Disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- Conduct Disorder
- Depression and Anxiety
- Self-harm and Eating Disorders
…go undiagnosed and therefore untreated.
These and other adolescent disorders if ignored can contribute to many destructive issues for your youngster including:
- Difficulties in school
- Run-ins with the law
- Family disruptions
- Alcohol or drug use and other addictions
- Running away
- Suicidal tendencies and even Suicide
If you’re a parent of a troubled teen, we have included a short questionnaire you should answer to determine if there is a possibility that your teenager could be among the one in five adolescents that are in need of professional intervention to treat any of these disorders.
Doing so right now before the symptoms have the opportunity to become even more severe could possibly keep your young person’s problems from causing permanent damage to their development and future stability. It may even save your child’s life.
Please for your teenager’s sake and the welfare of your entire family take some time right now and thoughtfully answer yes or no to these statements for yourself.
If you honestly answer yes to more than three of these statements and you know this behavior has gone on for at least two weeks, it’s very important for you to seek the proper professional intervention for your troubled teen as soon as possible.
Do these statements apply to your adolescent? (Answer yes or no)
- Has frequent angry outbursts, destroys things in a rage, or has broken the law.
- Cries often or overreacts to situations.
- Is often sad, withdrawn, tired or out of sorts with frequent mood swings.
- Avoids family and friends, spending more and more time alone.
- Has low self-esteem.
- Is exceptionally fearful or more worried than others his/her age.
- Has trouble concentrating or paying attention.
- Has trouble getting along with family and friends.
- Is a behavior problem at school, fails to complete homework or their grades have taken a turn for the worse.
- Is sleeping more or less than usual.
- Has had a sudden change in eating habits.
- Has suddenly lost interest in hobbies, music or sports that were important to them before.
- Has become overly obsessed with their looks.
- Displays signs of alcohol or drug use.
- Has become sexually active.
- Expresses feeling of overload or suicidal statements or behaviors.
- Takes unnecessary risks.
- fails to follow directions or constantly breaks the rules.
Remember, answering yes to at least four of these on the list above could be an indication that your adolescent may be in crisis right now suffering from a behavioral, emotional or mental disorder and you should seek professional intervention for diagnosis and possible treatment.
Even answering yes to two or three of these statements and sometimes even one can be an indication of a more serious teen crisis than just normal adolescent behavior. If you know in your heart that something isn’t right with your child’s behavior trust your gut feeling and seek the opinion of a professional immediately.
It’s always better to be safe then sorry when it comes to your youngster’s emotional and mental health. No one knows and understands a child’s behavior better then a parent or other caregiver so don’t waste precious time hoping the behavior will pass and everything will return to normal.
Raising a child through the difficult teenage years can be frustrating even under the best of circumstances so seek the help you need when symptoms of disorder first appear and don’t take risks with your son or daughter’s well-being or your own peace of mind.
For more information on teens in crisis check out our article section on Teen Disorders.