Are you worried about your teenager’s mental health?
Has your happy-go-lucky child suddenly become withdrawn and distant?
Do you suspect that your teen is depressed or that they are abusing drugs or alcohol?
If you have answered yes to any of the above, then now is the time to take action. Even if your teen is not yet suffering with a mental health disorder, that does not mean that they are not struggling with their mental health and that they don’t need your help and support.
Fortunately, if you are concerned that your adolescent is struggling to cope with everyday life at the moment, there are several steps that you can take to help them to better care for their mental health.
Find out more below.
Encourage them to talk about their feelings
Teenagers are not known for their love of sharing with their parents, but if you are worried about your teen’s wellbeing, then you need to encourage them to talk to you more about their emotions.
Try and avoid arranging a big “conversation” and instead, simply enquire about your teen’s day and let the chat develop naturally.
Make sure they keep active
If your teenager spends most of their free time in bed, then you need to try and get them up and about a bit more. Exercise is a natural self-esteem booster and can also help improve concentration levels, aid sleep, and generally make your teen feel better.
Aim for your teenager to get 30 minutes of exercise, five times a week for optimal results.
Intervene when necessary
Although you may not want to, it is vital that you step in and contact professional mental health services if you suspect that your teen is suffering with a specific mental health disorder such as depression, anxiety, drug or alcohol addiction, or if you think they may be self-harming.
Fortunately, you can find residential treatment centers for teens online that offer tailored support for teens struggling with their mental health.
Encourage a healthy diet
Teenagers are not known for their healthy eating habits and many survive on a combination of take-out and convenience foods. However, in terms of mental health, the food that they put into their bodies can have a significant effect on how they feel on a daily basis.
In order for your brain to function, you need a mixture of nutrients including a variety of fruits and vegetables, wholegrains such as bread or cereals, dairy products, oily fish, and plenty of water.
Teach them to practice mindfulness
Most teenagers have a lot going on. They have to manage their studies, build and maintain relationships with their peers, deal with the pressures of social media, and so much more on a near daily basis. This is enough to send anyone’s mental health spiraling. Thankfully, by simply practicing a few mindfulness techniques, your teen can learn to how to cope with the stresses of everyday life and how to see life more positively.