Anxiety or Normal Teen Angst?

Being a teenager is probably one of the most stressful andAnxiety can be paralizing anxious times in a person’s life.  There is pressure from all sides, friends, family, and school all while  teens are trying to figure out who they are and what they believe.  So, how do we know if the teens in our life are just going through normal teen angst or if they are developing significant issues with anxiety?

What is the definition of Anxiety? It is fear based and usually focuses on what could/will happen (i.e. PTSD – fear of what could happen based on past trauma experience, arachnophobia – its not actually fear of the spider, but what the spider could or will do.)

Here are some warning signs for anxiety you need to look:

  • Lost interest – fear of not being accepted being an outcast…avoiding situations
  • Change in sleep and food habits
  • Day dreams and doesn’t want to do things
  • Experience a sudden drop in grades
  • Feeling guilty
  • Extreme anger or sadness/over reaction
  • Constantly afraid
  • Multiple headaches and stomach aches
  • Forgets and doesn’t want to study
  • Isolation
  • Sweating excessively or needing to go to the restroom often
  • Inability to concentrate or make decisions
  • Nightmares

If you have a teen in your life, or if you yourself are struggling with anxiety you don’t have to do it alone.  Help is available, call today for a free 20 minute consultation.

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Great Expectations!

Check out our latest guest blog, Great Expectations, for Innovation 360, a counseling center helping people recover from addiction through an innovative combination of therapy and life development activities.

Overcoming the Bully

As a kid, I was the “fat kid” who was teased quite a bit about her weight.  When people think about bullying, this is the type of thing that they often think of. However, bullying is an issue that is rampant across our society, and it is not always as clear-cut as the name calling that I experienced. Unfortunately, bullying is an issue that most of us have to deal with in some capacity, at some point in our lives.  Whether it is a bully on the playground, in the workplace, or corporate bullies such as the CEO of Abercrombie and Fitch who recently stated that he only wanted “popular” and “pretty” people wearing his clothes, being insulted or belittled is hurtful, and if not addressed, can be deeply harmful.

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Teen Drug Abuse Facts

I ran across this great article today by It lists teen drug abuse facts, 11 to be exact.  This is scary information everyone that has or works with teens should be aware of.

Drugs are in our schools, on our playgrounds and in our malls.  It is imperative that we know the facts and educate our youth from young ages.  I can’t tell you how many teens I’ve worked with that began experimenting with drugs as young as 9 and 10 years old.  It’s both shocking and scary!

Start talking to your kids at a young age and keep talking to them, even when they roll their eyes.  The more open communication you have with the teens in your life the more likely they will come to you in their times of need.  If they come to you with concerns or questions about drugs or alcohol, remain calm and talk openly.  They will know if you are being genuine and they will hesitate to talk to you in the future if you freak out about their questions.  Remember teens are in a phase in which they are working to create their own identity.  They are curious and want to learn more about the world in which they live.

If you don’t talk to them about drugs and alcohol, their peers will.