Stress is not solely a problem of adulthood. Even teenagers are increasingly becoming victims of stress. Unfortunately, teen stress does not receive much attention. Nonetheless, studies have shown that about 20 percent of stressed individuals are teens. To make matters worse, the number of teens suffering from stress is rising rapidly.
Causes of teen stress
During adolescence, a person undergoes a series of physical and emotional changes. Your teenager child might not be adequately prepared to handle the sudden changes in his or life, which could make the teenager susceptible to stress. The mounting pressure of education and the high expectation from parents to excel in academics is one of the major causes of stress among teens.
Relationship problem among parents, which might lead to separation or divorce of parents, could make the child stressed. Death of a parent or close family member could be responsible for teen stress. Teen stress is also associated with peer pressure or problems with friends and sibling rivalry. Financial problems and chronic illnesses could make your child anxious and stressed. Stress can even develop when a teenager changes school.
Coping with teen stress
Your teenage son or daughter might not admit that he/she is stressed. Just like physical illnesses, emotional distress manifests itself through certain physical and emotional symptoms. A teenager suffering from stress will feel impatient. He/she will become angry easily or might cry too often. Physical symptoms such as poor appetite, overeating, excess sweating, stomachache, rapid breathing, palpitation, diarrhea and poor sleep or oversleeping might indicate that the child is stressed.
If your child displays any of the symptoms of stress, you should take immediate steps to help your son or daughter overcome the problem. Encourage your child to talk freely about his/her problems. The teenager might refuse to talk in the beginning, but constant cajoling would help the child to open up. Help your child to realize his/her strengths. Ask your child to focus on activities he can control and to give up unrealistic expectations. Deep breathing exercises, aerobics, swimming and yoga could help to alleviate stress. You can seek professional help. Counseling and behavioral therapy are effective in reducing stress.