an anxious teen with their parent

February 26, 2021

Does My Teen Have an Anxiety Disorder? [Quiz Included!]

It’s normal to feel anxious at times. There are things in life that will scare us or make us feel agitated—especially during the teen years! Yet, anxiety can grow to the point where it becomes a serious disorder, impeding on an individual’s ability to function in everyday life. Keep reading to learn if your teen has an anxiety disorder and how you can help them.

Signs of Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety disorders may not always be obvious. Teens, like most people, can be really good at hiding how they feel. A lot of times, they won’t let those around know about what they’re dealing with because they don’t want to come off as abnormal. Sometimes, however, it may be obvious that a teen may be struggling with anxiety. Although there are various anxiety disorder symptoms, individuals may not show all of them. Their response to anxiety may vary and change over time. Here are just some of the symptoms you should look for when considering whether or not your teen has an anxiety disorder.

  • Excessive worrying
  • Agitation
  • Restlessness
  • Feeling tired constantly
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Irritability
  • Ongoing muscle tension
  • Sleep disorders or sleep deprivation in general (not by choice but by inability to go to sleep or to stay asleep)
  • Panic attacks
  • Extreme uncomfortability during social situations
  • Irrational Fears
  • Increased heart rate
  • Hyperventilation
  • Sweating (when not exercising or in the heat)
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Nausea or dizziness

If you’re unsure about any of them, take the opportunity to gently ask your teen directly. Let them know that they’re in a safe place and that they can be open and honest about how they feel.

To help you navigate this issue further, we’ve created this quiz that can help you analyze just how likely it is that your teen has an anxiety disorder.

Causes of Anxiety Disorder

There are so many reasons as to why your teen may have an anxiety disorder. It’s not something that can clearly be pinpointed, but there are life events or even medical issues that can be associated with the disorder. However, there are some factors that can cause your teen to be at risk of getting an anxiety disorder, like

  • Abuse
  • Trauma or PTSD
  • Major health conditions
  • The buildup of multiple stressful situations
  • Other mental health disorders
  • Biological relatives with anxiety disorders
  • Drugs or alcohol use

Treatment Options for Anxiety Disorders

calm teen boyIf you suspect that your teen has an anxiety disorder, it’s important to seek help. Talk to your family doctor and therapist. Your doctor may be able to direct you to appropriate medication options and your therapist can help your teen navigate their anxieties and learn the coping strategies they need to be successful.

Some things that have been known to help with anxiety are

  • Meditation
  • Yoga, working out, or other physical activity
  • Reduce caffeine intake
  • Get more sleep (teens need 8-10 hours of sleep per night)
  • Eat a healthier diet

Turn-About Ranch Can Help!

After talking with your teen’s therapist, you should have a good idea of the type of treatment that is needed. Is inpatient treatment needed? Could equine therapy be helpful? If these options haven’t been discussed but you think they’d be valuable to your teen, discuss them with your therapist. You can also look to Turn-About Ranch as we’ve worked with many teens dealing with anxiety. We’re passionate about helping teens learn how to cope with their issues in a safe and supportive environment. Give us a call at (800) 842-1165.

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Turn-About Ranch

280 N 300 E.
Escalante, UT 84726
(800) 842-1165