Early Detection of Mental Illness in Teens

There are many different pressures that adolescents suffer from, such as making their parents proud, performing well in school and being seen as popular amongst their peers. They may even feel like their faith is being tested. Whether there are family financial issues, a messy divorce, or someone close dealing with an addiction or mental issues, many teens endure troubled times. A Place of Hope for Christian Counseling is here to help!

Teens that are desperately looking for a way to be accepted by their peers may develop eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa, in an attempt to uphold a public persona that they feel will make them more liked. These kinds of eating disorders can cause serious physical problems, including constipation, diarrhea, cardiac arrest, acne, tooth loss, brain atrophy and kidney failure. Bulimia can also lead to substance abuse with laxatives and weight loss supplements and, if the condition is left untreated, can be life-threatening. Disorders that deal with binge eating and purging can also lead to social withdrawal and bouts of extreme depression.

Teens today aren’t just afflicted with eating disorders, they may struggle with depression. Many types of depression begin in teen years. Aside from the feelings of sadness or irritability, depression can cause a variety of symptoms such as:

  • Changes in appetite (significant weight loss or weight gain)
  • Changes in sleep (trouble falling asleep, staying asleep or sleeping too much)
  • Feelings of guilt
  • Inability to concentrate/indecisiveness
  • Feelings of helplessness
  • Loss of energy (feeling fatigued)

It is important to act in the early stages depression, since it can lead to recurrent thoughts of suicide, or even taking steps to end one’s life.

Teens that feel that God has forsaken them may be overwhelmed, and start to use drugs and substances to help cope with their confounding feelings. Drug use, for many teens, becomes a way to cope with the daily trials of life. Alcohol abuse and drug dependency can lead to:

  • A severe drop in their performance at school
  • Indulging in delinquent behavior
  • Deterioration in the relationships between them and their family
  • Lessening of their faith

Catching these signs of mental illnesses before they spiral out of control can ensure that these teens have strong emotional, physical and spiritually-fulfilling lives. Finding the means to combat these types of mental illnesses can be highly painful but, with A Place of Hope and our whole-person approach to recovery, they can reclaim their well-being through our Christian counseling services and regain their spiritual strength. Contact a confidential counselor today for more information!

Leave a Reply