Anxiety in teens is tricky.
While a little bit sprinkled throughout the teenage years is normal, how do you know how much is too much?
If your teen seems to be struggling, what can you do to help – especially if they aren’t as open with you as they used to be?
For some, unchecked anxiety can grow and spread like wildfire, burning through at breakneck speed. Robbing them of joy and freedom.
If you’re worried about your teen, we’ve put together 7 hidden signs of anxiety to look out for.
1. Avoidant Behavior
Does your teen suddenly not want to go to school, or seems to have lost the desire to participate in activities they used to love?
This can be a sign of anxiety. Sometimes, a desire to not leave the house is coupled with physical symptoms, such as a headache or stomachache.
If your teen is exhibiting avoidant behavior, it’s a good idea to check in to see if there’s something else going on.
If they aren’t willing to open up to you – or give you the standard answer of “fine,” when you know there’s more to it – therapy is always a good resource.
2. Trouble Sleeping
The teenage years come with additional pressures and worries, and sometimes those can build into anxiety, making it hard to fall asleep.
Being tired makes it easier to succumb to anxiety, creating a cycle of worry, insomnia, and fatigue.
No one disputes the value of a good night’s sleep on all aspects of the body – including the brain.
If your teen’s complaining about insomnia, or if they seem especially tired, it could be because anxiety is keeping them awake.
Is your teen withdrawn, reclusive, and generally not engaged like they once were? While some change is normal, excessive withdrawal can be indicative of anxiety and/or depression.
If you sense your teen pulling away and retreating, check in with them and find out what’s going on.
4. Change in Behavior
Is your teen skipping class? Are you worried they may be cutting, showing signs of an eating disorder, or experimenting with drugs and alcohol? These are big indicators that they may be anxious or depressed.
Behavioral issues, especially ones with grave negative consequences need to be addressed.
Your teen could be pushing boundaries. Stepping in – imposing consequences for their actions and finding appropriate depression and anxiety treatment – can help them work through what they’re experiencing, and give them better ways to cope.
5. Disconnected from Self
If your teen feels disassociated – like they’re detached from themselves and living in a dream – or as though things that are happening aren’t “real,” this is indicative of anxiety.
It can be quite scary to have one’s perception of the world and reality change so drastically, and seeing a therapist will help ground them, as well as work through what else may be going on.
6. Fear of Dying
Is your teen worried that they’re having a heart attack, or are they becoming more and more of a hypochondriac? This is one of the ways anxiety presents itself. Because it influences the cardiovascular system, anxiety can make it feel as though the individual experiencing it is having heart issues as the heart rate increases and anxiety escalates.
7. Excessive Worrying & Perfectionistic Tendencies
Perfectionism goes hand in hand with anxiety.
High school comes with increased academic pressures which can exacerbate anxiety. If your teen seems excessively worried and anxious and has a hard time being less than “perfect,” this is a good indication that they’re suffering from anxiety.
If your teen is struggling mentally, the best thing you can do is get them into therapy.
The teenage brain is not fully developed. The earlier they’re able to share how they are feeling, learn about their symptoms and how the brain works, and are exposed to positive coping strategies, the better.
If you’re looking for anxiety treatment for your teen in Fair Oaks or Roseville, CA, give us a call. For those who aren’t in the area, we offer convenient virtual sessions.
We love working with teens and helping people of all ages go on to live happy, healthy, successful lives.
Begin Working With A Therapist for Teens in Roseville, CA, and the Sacramento area:
If you’ve been concerned about your child’s mental health and behavior, then getting help from a compassionate teen therapist may be the support you’ve been looking for. We will be an ally for your teen and help them navigate the challenges of adolescence. To begin counseling in Fair Oaks, CA, Roseville, CA, or online, follow these steps
Contact the Relationship Therapy Center and schedule a free 20-minute phone consultation to learn more about in-person or online teen therapy
Make an appointment for your teen to meet with one of our compassionate teen therapists
Get the support your teen needs to navigate adolescent challenges with confidence!
Other Counseling Services offered at The Relationship Therapy Center in California:
In addition to teen therapy, Our Sacramento area counseling clinics located in Roseville and Fair Oaks, CA are pleased to offer a variety of mental health services. Our couples services include: Couples Counseling, Counseling after infidelity, sex therapy, co-parent counseling, family therapy, divorce counseling, intensive couples retreats, and premarital counseling. Our individual therapy services include anxiety treatment, therapy for children, teen therapy, depression treatment, codependency counseling and individual relationship counseling. Our therapists offer online counseling in California to treat a variety of mental health concerns. Please reach out to our Sacramento area therapy office to learn more about the many ways we can help you or your loved ones.