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Everything You Need to Know About Teenage Anxiety Symptoms

Micah Abraham, BSc
Everything You Need to Know About Teenage Anxiety Symptoms

It's not uncommon for teenagers to suffer from serious anxiety. Anxiety is difficult enough to deal with, but when you're also a teenager that is dealing with all of the issues of growing up and high school, it can become a real problem.

In this article, we'll look at the symptoms of anxiety and what they involve in teenagers.

Types and Symptoms of Anxiety in Teens

The way symptoms of particular anxiety disorders manifest in children and adolescents often differ slightly from the way the symptoms of the same disorders manifest in adults. For this reason, it is important to familiarize yourself with the behaviors associated with the teenage versions of various anxiety disorders.

The descriptions below are summaries of those found in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition or DSM-IV, the diagnostic reference manual used by most mental health professionals.

Medical treatment for anxiety disorders is generally prescribed on a case by case basis by a mental health professional. However, there are other, safer treatment options available, which will be discussed in the following section.

Safe Anti-Anxiety Treatments for Teens

As with anxiety symptoms, anxiety treatment recommendations for teen sufferers are slightly different from those prescribed for adults. Because teens' brains are still developing, it is best to avoid medications whenever possible and to begin by trying non-medical techniques for relieving anxiety, including:

Ensuring that a teen has positive and supportive family relations and that they have healthy outlets for their minds and bodies to work out the stress can have a huge impact on limiting how deeply teenage anxiety will affect them.

It is also important to bear in mind that if a teen does not feel that their condition is impeding their life, that they should not be treated as though they are sick unless they are endangering themselves or others. Teenagers are likely at an age where they need to feel control, and if they're forced into therapy they may rebel.

An Effective Anxiety Treatment for Teens

If the above methods have been tried and the teen still isn't responding, it may be time to consult a psychiatrist to recommend a medication that is safe for teens. Medications are necessary in some cases where chemical imbalances have become too severe to balance out on their own, and their necessity, if it arises, should not be looked upon as a weakness of character or a failing of any person involved.

The sooner severe, life-impeding anxiety is addressed, the sooner a teen can move on to living the healthy and fulfilling life they want for themselves without anxiety holding them back.

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