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What You Need to Know About Teen Mental Health

Blog post written by,

Ara Mascarenas, M.S - Registered Intern for Mental health Counselor Licensure


The teenage years are one of the most challenging stages in one’s development. In my

experience as a psychotherapist, I’ve noticed that many teens want to succeed, have good self-

esteem, and manage their relationships effectively. It’s not uncommon for my clients to request

tools to navigate difficult situations at home, school, or with their peers. Research shows that

adolescence is a critical link between childhood and adulthood, characterized by significant

physical, psychological, and social transitions (Population Reference Bureau, 2023). 


During adolescence, there are multiple factors that can affect mental health. The more risk

factors an adolescent is exposed to, the greater the potential impact on their mental health. For

instance, exposure to adversity, peer pressure to conform, and identity exploration can

contribute to stress during adolescence. Additionally, media influence and gender norms can

widen the gap between adolescents' perceptions or aspirations for the future and their lived

reality. Furthermore, the quality of their home life and relationships with peers can also

determine mental health. Risks such as violence, bullying, harsh parenting, and socioeconomic

problems are also known to affect mental health.


However, the part of their brain that oversees decision-making, planning, flexible thinking,

impulse control, and time management is not yet developed. In fact, the Prefrontal Cortex does

not stop developing until age thirty. Teens are put in this unique spot where they are expected

to act like adults and have skills that have simply not been developed yet.  Fortunately, there is still hope for teenagers struggling with mental health. By making connections, building resilience, fostering self-esteem, and learning ways to properly navigate social situations, teen mental health outcomes can improve.


As a therapist, I am committed to promote a therapeutic group for teenage girls focusing on

self-esteem, body image, relationships, and social media. This group will provide a protective

and supportive environment that is crucial for the social and emotional development of

adolescents. It will encourage connection while learning healthy habits such as maintaining

good friendships, communicating efficiently, navigating media platforms, and interpersonal

skills.


If you’d like to receive more information about the group, please reach out to Ara Mascarenas at

954.850.6633 or email info@homeforbalance.com.

 

Ara Mascarenas, M.S


I am interested in working with children, adolescents, and their families. I am good at establishing a positive therapeutic relationship with clients who are currently struggling with anxiety, depression, and behavioral issues. For more information about working with me and to get a FREE 30-minute phone consult, please call at 954.850.6633 or email me at aramascarenasmhc@gmail.com.


Services available in English/Spanish and Online.




References


The importance of adolescence. PRB. (n.d.). https://www.prb.org/resources/the-importance-of-

adolescence






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