Coping with Stress for Teens & Adolescents
Visit the TeensHealth® from Nemours® Stress and Coping Center to learn various ways to help teens and adolescents cope with stress. Below is some information from the site on stress in teens and adolescents.
Why do you feel stress?
In your daily life certain events, which are called stressors, can provoke stress in your body. You body will respond by activating the nervous system and releasing certain hormones; for example, your adrenal glands will produce more adrenaline and cortisol. You may notice a faster heart rate, breathing rate, blood pressure and metabolism.
These natural reactions, called your stress response, are what give you the ability to perform well under pressure. However, problems can arise when your stress response overreacts or fails to shut off.
What triggers stress?
Stress can be triggered by anything, from physical danger to feeling pressure to perform. In situations like this, your body goes into stress response and quickly returns to normal state when the immediate danger or pressure subsides.
However, your body can also go into stress overload when you experience ongoing stressors in your everyday life. For example, dealing with family issues, your performance at school, bullying, or find yourself over-scheduled with activities can all cause a stress overload for your body.
Can stress be serious?
When your body goes into lasting, low-level stress your nervous system remains activate, pumping out extra hormones over an extended period of time. Without a “reset,” on-going stress can leave you feeling depleted, exhausted and can weaken your immune system, leading to other illnesses.
Your stress may be a serious issue if you have any of the following symptoms:
- anxiety or panic attacks
- a feeling of being constantly pressured, hassled and hurried
- irritability and moodiness
- sadness or depression
- physical symptoms, such as stomach problems, headaches or even chest pain
- allergic reactions, such as eczema or asthma
- problems sleeping
- drinking too much, smoking, overeating or doing drugs
Fortunately, there are resources available for helping you develop a toolbox of coping skills. At Fairmount we use several forms of therapy, many that incorporate creative arts, to help teens and adolescents with stress management techniques.