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Signs of Anxiety in Teen Girls

anxietyWhat is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a feeling of fear or panic. Feeling generally anxious sometimes is normal. Most people worry about something – relationships or exams – but once the difficult situation is over, you feel better and calm down. Anxiety sneaks up on us when we are paying attention to everything but the present moment.

Anxiety comes we are too focused on the future, the what-if scenarios we have no control over. If the problem has gone but the feeling of fear or panic stays or even gets stronger, that’s when anxiety becomes a problem. With as many as one in six young people experiencing anxiety at some point, it is very common to have anxiety.

Signs of Anxiety in Teen Girls

The symptoms of anxiety start out the same as just feeling generally anxious but get worse or last longer than they should. These include:

  • Constant Worry: Excessive worrying about everyday activities.
  • Restlessness: Inability to relax or sit still.
  • Irritability: Frequent feelings of frustration or anger.
  • Sleep Problems: Difficulty falling or staying asleep.
  • Physical Symptoms: Headaches, stomachaches, or other unexplained aches and pains.
  • Avoidance: Avoiding social situations or activities they used to enjoy.
  • Poor Concentration: Difficulty focusing on tasks or schoolwork.

Feeling one, some or even most of the above doesn’t necessarily mean you have anxiety. It’s important to talk to a health professional to get a full diagnosis.

Why Anxiety is Common Among Teen Girls

Teen girls face unique challenges that can contribute to anxiety, including:

  • Social Pressure: The desire to fit in and be accepted by peers.
  • Academic Stress: High expectations and pressure to perform well in school.
  • Body Image Issues: Concerns about appearance and self-esteem.
  • Family Dynamics: Family conflicts or high expectations from parents.

Major Causes of Anxiety

Several factors can contribute to anxiety in teen girls, including:

  • Genetics: Family history of anxiety or other mental health disorders.
  • Brain Chemistry: Imbalances in brain chemicals that regulate mood.
  • Environmental Factors: Stressful or traumatic events, such as bullying or loss of a loved one.
  • Personality Traits: Certain traits, such as perfectionism or low self-esteem, can make teens more prone to anxiety.

Safety Precautions and Corrective Measures

To help teen girls manage anxiety, consider the following steps:

  • Open Communication: Encourage open and honest discussions about their feelings.
  • Healthy Lifestyle: Promote regular exercise, a balanced diet, and adequate sleep.
  • Professional Help: Seek therapy or counseling from a mental health professional.
  • Avoid Triggers: Identify and avoid situations or factors that trigger anxiety.

Effective Therapies

There are three main ways to treat anxiety. Sometimes, a doctor may suggest using more than one method together. One common treatment is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), a type of therapy where you talk with a therapist to understand and change how your thoughts and feelings affect you. You also learn ways to relax.

Additionally, we use Art Therapy and Equine Assisted Therapy to treat anxiety. Art Therapy involves creating art to express yourself, which helps in understanding and managing emotions. Equine Assisted Therapy involves working with horses to build emotional awareness and develop coping skills. Both therapies provide valuable tools for dealing with anxiety.

ART Therapy (Accelerated Resolution Therapy)

ART Therapy, or Accelerated Resolution Therapy, is a unique form of therapy that helps individuals process traumatic memories and reduce anxiety. This method uses specific eye movements, guided by a trained therapist, to help clients reframe and resolve distressing memories.
During an ART session, the therapist will ask the individual to visualize a traumatic event while following their hand movements with their eyes. This process helps the brain process and store the memory in a less distressing way. By doing so, ART Therapy can significantly reduce symptoms of anxiety and trauma, allowing individuals to move forward with a clearer and calmer mind.

Equine Assisted Therapy

Equine Assisted Therapy is a therapeutic approach that involves interactions with horses to promote emotional and psychological well-being. In this therapy, individuals engage in activities such as grooming, feeding, and leading horses under the supervision of a trained therapist. These interactions help build confidence, improve emotional regulation, and reduce anxiety.
Horses are sensitive animals and can mirror the emotions of the person working with them, providing immediate feedback and fostering a sense of connection and understanding. This therapy is particularly effective for teens as it combines physical activity with emotional healing, helping them develop trust, empathy, and a sense of responsibility.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Makes Children Anxious?
Children tend to feel anxious about different things at different ages. Many of these worries are a normal part of growing up. From about eight months to three years, for example, it’s very common for young children to have something called separation anxiety. They may become clingy and cry when separated from their parents. This is a normal stage in children’s development and tends to ease off at around age two to three. It’s also common for younger children to develop specific fears or phobias.

Common fears in early childhood include animals, insects, storms, heights, water, blood, and the dark. These fears usually go away gradually on their own. Throughout a child’s life there will be other times when they feel anxiety. Lots of children feel anxious when going to a new school, for example, or before tests and exams. Some children feel shy in social situations and may need support with this.

When is Anxiety a Problem for Teens?
Anxiety becomes a problem for children when it starts to get in the way of their day-to-day life. Severe anxiety can harm children’s mental and emotional wellbeing, affecting their self-esteem and confidence. They may become withdrawn and go to great lengths to avoid things or situations that make them feel anxious.

When Should You Get Help?  
If your child’s anxiety is severe, persists and interferes with their everyday life, it’s a good idea to get some help. If you feel your teenage daughter is struggling with anxiety and you need professional help or out-of-placement, please call us today to see if Providence Pass is the answer you have been looking for. 

Related Links

Teens With Mental Health Conditions
Treatment For Struggled Teen Girls
Why Are Teenagers So Angry?
Teen Mood Disorders
Panic Attacks in Teens
Mood Swings in Teenage Girls

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