Are You Concerned About Your Anxious Teen?
Does your teenage girl appear to be constantly withdrawn or on edge? Have you noticed changes in her sleeping or eating habits, such as struggling to get to sleep, stay asleep or insomnia? Does she complain about physical discomforts, such as headaches, nausea, rashes or an increased heart rate? Perhaps she struggles to move on from mistakes and over commits at school, work and in extracurricular activities. Her drive to succeed can become over-consuming and even paralyzing. Perhaps her rapid and sometimes illogical thoughts negatively influence her self-esteem, ability to focus and relationships with family and friends. Do you wish you had the insight to help her find relief and effectively manage her anxiety?
Watching your teen suffer from intense anxiety can be a troubling, frustrating and even frightening experience, especially if the stress has begun expressing itself through panic attacks. Additionally, attending to your child’s needs can be confusing. You want her to excel in school, sports, her job and future endeavors, but know that something isn’t right. You want to encourage her however you can, but you may struggle to know how, especially as she becomes more introverted, defiant or distracted.
Teen Anxiety is Becoming More Common
It is common for teenage girls to experience heightened levels of anxiety between the ages of 13 and 18 because of physiological changes in the brain and body and the external pressures placed on them. But, as the push to get and stay ahead becomes increasingly more daunting, it can place a further strain on her undeveloped brain and nervous system. Many teenagers attempt to juggle their demanding workload at school with extracurricular activities, which makes for a fast-paced routine that begins early in the morning and ends late at night. And, if she thinks that she’s not performing optimally, your daughter may believe it is caused by a fundamental flaw within herself, which can perpetuate a cycle of negative thoughts that fuel poor self-esteem. She may even engage in destructive behaviors to cope with her troublesome thoughts and feelings.
Although some amount of stress is normal and can be productive, your daughter may be showing noticeable shifts in behavior, suffering from low self-esteem or her anxiety might be impacting her ability to feel and function well. Teen counseling can help your teenage girl find immediate relief from her physical symptoms and long-term, lasting solutions to foster good physical and mental health.
Therapy for Teen Anxiety Can Help Your Daughter Find Lasting Relief
If you are proactive about your daughter’s health and she is motivated to find relief from her symptoms, teen counseling can not only be very effective, but it can change the course of her life so that anxiety doesn’t continue to be a hurdle down the road. I offer a safe space for your daughter to openly express her innermost concerns and provide the tips and techniques she needs to effectively mitigate her anxious thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations.
I work collaboratively with you and your daughter to help her set up realistic goals and healthier boundaries, communication practices, and coping skills. During our sessions together, I can help her identify, understand, and address what’s fueling her anxiety. She can feel secure and supported as she explores the triggers, thought patterns, emotions, and beliefs that cause her to personalize what’s going on around her. Through sessions with me, she will better understand the connection between the mind and body, and how her thought process influences her behavior and physical sensations. I employ skills-based, experiential approaches, such as drawing and collage making to help get at the root cause of her anxiety and help her gain a deeper connection with herself. My approach is holistic and seeks to combine the mind, body, and spirit to promote lasting mental and physical health. By healing and connecting all of these elements, I believe everyone is capable of change and attaining happiness.
I provide a confidential space for your daughter to openly express and explore her emotions. With that being said, I believe that you, the parents, are experts in your daughter’s life, and I will sit down with you regularly to talk about the progress or changes you’ve seen during treatment. When we work as a team, we are best equipped to find the most effective and thoughtful ways to support your child and promote balance in your teen’s life.
If anxiety seems to be running your teen’s life, getting help now – during the teenage years – is crucial. Teenagers can develop breathing techniques and self-talk practices that they can utilize to find relief and feel empowered throughout their lives. With the guidance of an empathic professional who understands what your teen is going through, she can learn healthy ways to manage stress and learn the importance of maintaining balance now and throughout her life. There are many effective tools to treat teen anxiety, and I work with you to create an approach that best addresses your child’s specific personality, strengths, and needs so that she can ultimately nurture her passion and achieve what she wants in life.
Although you think your teen could benefit from anxiety treatment, you may still have some questions or concerns…
I’m worried about the cost.
I encourage you to think of teen counseling as investing in your child’s wellbeing and strengthening the bond within the family. If your teen is prone to anxiety, under a lot of pressure or has been suffering for a long time, anxiety symptoms are unlikely to go away on their own and may even worsen. Ongoing and persistently high levels of stress can impact mental, emotional, and physical health, as well as your teen’s capacity for healthy academic and social development. Teen counseling for anxiety can provide your daughter with the skills she needs to navigate these problems now and in the future. It’s about getting her back to where she feels whole and can maintain that balance.
I’ve heard therapy can take a long time.
Although therapy takes a certain level of commitment (in and out of session) to be effective, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will take a long time for your daughter to experience the positive effects of this work. In fact, it usually takes 2-4 sessions for your child to begin feeling lower levels of stress.
If you see that your teen is suffering from uncontrollable worry, sleeping issues, perfectionism, an inability to slow down or mood swings, getting help may be critical. Seeking intervention now, before her anxiety becomes any worse, can help your teen develop the healthy coping and stress management skills she’ll need as schoolwork and external stressors become more intense later on in life.
As a parent, how involved will I be in this process?
I work in collaboration with you and your daughter to formalize a treatment plan that best supports her needs. You are asked to take an active role in this work. But, because I strive to create a container where your daughter can feel safe being vulnerable and expressing her innermost concerns and desires, your involvement is limited. Before each session, I will talk to you for 10-15 minutes about any conflicts or changes in behavior that you’ve noticed since our last session. Sometimes I will provide homework for you and your teen to participate in together, and we’ll take time to discuss how you all are engaging in the work. I certainly don’t mean to isolate you from the therapy process, but I do need to create a safe and confidential space for your daughter.
Anxiety Treatment Can Help Your Teen Heal
If you’re ready to be proactive about your teen’s emotional, mental and physical health, I invite you to call 317-840-0490 for a free 15-minute phone consultation to learn if my approach would be a good match for your daughter.
Indianapolis, IN, Marion County, and the state of Indiana.
Copyright 2010-2021 by Nicole Burgess LMFT