In the case of most substance use disorders and mental health conditions, cognitive-behavioral therapy for teens is a good idea. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of therapy that provides what adolescents and teens need.
All adolescents and teens go through various emotional ups and downs while they’re growing up. Feeling angry, frustrated, or sad from time to time is a perfectly natural reaction to life’s highs and lows. However, some life-changing events can take an extra toll on adolescents and teens and lead to many changes in their behavior at home or school. Sometimes, “growing pains” are not enough to explain behavioral problems.
Contact Foothills at Red Oak Recovery by calling 866.300.5275 or reaching out to our team online to learn more about cognitive-behavioral therapy for teens.
What Can You Expect From Teen Behavioral Therapy?
The sooner you recognize and seek treatment for your teen’s behavior, the better the outcome will be of the chosen treatment. For example, early substance abuse treatment will prevent long-term health problems or a potentially fatal overdose.
Traditional therapy options may be enough to deal with mild behavioral problems. But parents at their wit’s end may consider residential treatment instead of outpatient teen therapy services. A residential treatment facility may provide teens with an opportunity to escape the people or situations that trigger their issues. This treatment will allow them to learn new and healthy responses to their stressors.
If your teen has a mental health disorder, a residential treatment program can also help stabilize the condition. Through various therapies, professionals can teach teens with mental health disorders how to manage their symptoms. A teen with a severe emotional or behavioral disorder could benefit from the more focused treatment found at a residential program.
While teens are at residential treatment centers, they will often engage in various behavioral therapies, such as CBT or dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). These treatments help them replace their negative behavioral responses to stressors with healthy and constructive reactions. With these tools, teens will learn to navigate intense emotions like anger, frustration, or stress in a healthier way moving forward.
What Is Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Teens?
CBT is a type of psychotherapy that focuses on making connections between behavior, thoughts, and feelings. It’s a form of therapy that can help adolescents and teens identify and change dysfunctional patterns of behavior. CBT can be effective in treating many teen issues, including
- Disordered eating
Adolescents and teens can often develop distorted core beliefs about themselves while they’re growing up and forming their identities. CBT helps them recognize and then modify those distortions. A psychotherapist using CBT may begin by helping their teen client identify unhealthy thought patterns that contribute to their mental health problems. In later sessions, they can teach new ways to think about negative behaviors and thought patterns, leading to more effective ways of getting the teen’s needs met.
Signs that Teens Need Behavioral Therapy
You and your child may need the help of adolescent or teen therapy services if their behavior is becoming unreasonable or difficult to handle. Dealing with an adolescent or teen’s behavioral problems is different from dealing with those of younger children. It’s not as easy as dealing with toddlers acting up. As your child goes through their adolescent and teen years, they start to form their own identities, which may clash with your own. Some warning signs that your teen needs behavioral therapy include:
- Being dishonest
- Changing eating or sleeping habits
- Damaging property
- Disrespecting authority figures
- Engaging in risky sexual activity
- Experiencing anxiety that interferes with daily activities
- Fighting constantly
- Having dramatic mood swings
- Having frequent nightmares
- Performing poorly in school
- Skipping school
- Threatening to run away
- Using drugs or alcohol
With older children, in particular, some behavioral problems can include destructive or violent tendencies.
Why Might a Teen Require Teen Therapy Services?
Professional medical help could be necessary to keep your adolescent or teen healthy and safe. You should consider immediate treatment for your teen if they are threatening to or have already:
- Attempted suicide
- Attempted self-harm, such as cutting or burning
- Hurt others
- Begun using drugs or alcohol
- Been diagnosed with a mental health condition
Each of the conditions we’ve listed above can be complex. However, the proper treatment can address these unique issues, giving your teen relief.