The teenage years are a time of transition, from childhood to adulthood, from dependent to independent. And just as familial relationships are an essential part of childhood, peer-to-peer connections are an integral part of adolescence. When we are teenagers, our social interactions are one of the primary ways we explore the world, experiment with new ways of thinking and being, and learn how to form healthy relationships with others. Social interactions also allow us to build confidence and self-identity that we carry into adulthood.
COVID, Loneliness, and it’s Impact on Teens
Unfortunately, loneliness among teenagers was already becoming an epidemic before coronavirus hit. And now, in the wake of 2020 it’s even more of a problem. In addition to changing hormones, the pressures of becoming an adult, and the high school social scene, teenagers are being tested with distance learning and facing increased social isolation. They have to adapt to a new style of education, which means a lack of routine and discipline, more external distractions, and an unstable learning environment, and their primary source of face-to-face interactions is gone.
The result is that now, more than ever, many are relying exclusively on screens for social interaction. And the more they rely on their cell phones, messaging apps, and social media platforms, the less likely they are to get out of the house, see their friends, and engage with the world. The result is feelings of loneliness, depression, stress, anxiety, and shame.
Teen Therapy Can Help Teens Cope With Loneliness, Sadness, Depression, and Anxiety During COVID
For these reasons, it is crucial that teenagers be given as many resources as possible to navigate these times. Right now, they are facing the expected teenage challenges and also the unexpected, COVID-19 specific challenges. As teenagers are often reluctant to open up to their parents, a therapist can be a much-needed adult confidant at this time. Let’s not forget that human beings are fundamentally social creatures and are wired for human connection. Without it, we feel lonely and depressed, teenagers being no exception.
In today’s world, therapy can help. It is a safe space for teens to talk about whatever they are feeling, be it fear that they or a family member could become ill, stress due to a parent’s recent job loss, or grief for the loss of milestone events such as birthday parties, prom, and graduation. It is normal and natural to have negative emotions, but without emotional support, teens can internalize their feelings, causing them to show up as stress, anxiety, shame, or guilt.
None of us know what the long-term repercussions of social isolation due to a health pandemic will be. But we do know that the long-term effects of loneliness for teenagers can be depression or PTSD. A lonely or isolated teen is more likely to experience both mental and physical health challenges, such as increased stress, a higher likelihood of using drugs and alcohol, and low self-esteem. Therapy is a safe space for your teen to open up and provides them an opportunity to sort through and resolve all they are thinking, feeling, and experiencing. It’s a chance to get to the root of issues, learn healthy coping mechanisms, and learn how much a self-care routine can positively affect their life.
Human beings are adaptable, and there is always light at the end of the tunnel. When we overcome challenges and get through difficult times, we prove to ourselves that we can handle whatever life throws at us and come out on the other side as stronger, more confident, and more resilient people. With help and the right tools, your teen can get through this high-intensity time as a more resilient and adaptable human.
Begin Teen Therapy In California:
If your teen is struggling with distance learning and loneliness, then reach out to our teen therapists to get them help. Remember, social distancing does not mean social isolation. Help your teen learn the skills to cope with loneliness and overcome the symptoms of depression and anxiety. To begin online therapy in California, 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.