Saturday, September 16, 2023

How Does Stress Affect Teenagers

Stress And Its Effects On Young People Today

How stress affects your body – Sharon Horesh Bergquist

Stress can be defined as any change that triggers emotional, physical, or mental strain. Stress is in fact the bodys natural response to any unpleasant experience that requires ones attention. People generally believe that stress only affects adults who have bills to pay and families to look after but thats not at all true. Children, preteens, teens, and even toddlers experience stress in different forms.

Generally, anything that causes fear and anxiety can cause stress. Usual causes of stress in children and teens include being away from home, moving to a new place, mismanagement of time, and getting along with other peers.

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How Stress Positively Affects Students

Its not all bad. A little stress can actually help students perform a little better. The key word there is little.

When you are stressed out, your body releases chemicals to your brain in an attempt to help it focus, and pushes adrenaline into the bloodstream so as to heighten your senses. In turn, your heightened senses help you hone in and focus on the task at hand. So a little stress can be helpful for students, but for a very short time.

But heres the bad side. Over time, the tension increases, compelling you to put more effort into successfully relieving causes of stress. Then your brain fights against itself instead of working on a task.

How Stress Affects The Teenage Brain

Adolescent brains may be more sensitive to the stress hormone cortisol and may feel its effects more quickly. The part of the brain that is responsible for shutting down the stress response, called the prefrontal cortex, is less developed in adolescents, so stress may also be experienced for longer periods.

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Make The Right Choices

Some of the best and most positive strategies to address stress may take work or practice. On the other hand, some negative coping strategies offer near instant relief, making them attractive. A number of these quick fixes include drinking, drug use, self-mutilation, sexual behaviors, thrill-seeking, and unhealthy eating patterns to name a few. They may offer fleeting relief but they can be dangerous. They can lead to lower self-esteem, conflict in relationships, and poor performance in school. And this just adds to the stress, creating more need to escape.

Its important to remember there are choices. Healthy choices offer the ability to gain control and resolve issues.

When To Seek Professional Help

How Does Stress Affect Teenagers

Many teens arent able to say, Im stressed and this is the reason why. Therefore, their behaviors often signal how theyre feeling.

If you suspect your teen is struggling with stress, start a conversation about it. You may also want to teach your teen some simple stress management techniques.

If your teens stress seems to be interfering with school, family, household responsibilities, or friends, it may be time to seek professional help. Symptoms lasting more than two weeks could be a sign that your teen may have an underlying mental health problem, like depression or anxiety.

Talk to your teens pediatrician if you have concerns about stress. Its important to rule out any physical health issues and to discuss treatment options. A physician may refer your child to counseling.

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Concerned Your Teen Is Too Stressed

Take our 2-minute stress level quiz to see if he or she may benefit from further diagnosis and treatment.

If you think you or someone you care about may be suffering from high stress, anxiety, or any other mental health condition, PsyCom strongly recommends that you seek help from a mental health professional in order to receive a proper diagnosis and support. We have compiled a list of resources where you may be able to find additional help at .

If Stress Is So Normal Why Do I Feel So Bad

With all the things that happen when youre a teenager, its easy to feel overwhelmed. Things that you cant control are often the most frustrating. Maybe your parents are fighting. Maybe youre having trouble with your social life. You can also feel bad when you put pressure on yourself. This could be pressure to get good grades or to get promoted at your part-time job. A common reaction to stress is to criticize yourself. You may even get so upset that things dont seem fun anymore. Life might look pretty grim. When this happens, its easy to think theres nothing you can do to change things. But you can!

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Contributing Factors That Mediate The Adolescent Changes In Stressreactivity

The mechanisms that mediate these adolescent-related changes in hormonalresponsiveness remain unclear. However, it appears to involve both the activationand feedback phases of the HPA response. In the context of activation, experimentshave shown that neural activity in the PVN, particularly in the CRH-containingcells, is higher in adolescent than adult animals following stress . These datasuggest that the prolonged ACTH and corticosterone responses prior to puberty may inpart be driven by greater stress-induced CRH production and release. Along withthese differences in activation, studies on negative feedback have shown thatpre-treatment with the synthetic glucocorticoid, dexamethasone is less effective atblunting a stress-induced corticosterone response in prepubertal compared to adultrats . Thus, theseresults would support the notion that periadolescent animals may show lessglucocorticoid-dependent negative feedback on the HPA axis than adults. Futurestudies will need to address what cellular mechanisms mediate these putativeage-dependent changes in sensitivity to negative feedback, such as differences inglucocorticoid receptor function in the brain and pituitary. To date, however, theseavenues of research have been largely unexplored.

What Does Stress Look Like In Teens & Adolescents

How does stress affect a teenager’s brain? – Science Nation

Stress is a reaction felt by your body and mind to changing events or situations that are happening every day. These changes, known as stressors, all vary in intensity and how long they last.

One of the most significant sources of stress in teenagers is peer-related stress. Adults and younger children experience this as well, but in a less intense way.

As teens progress into early adulthood, there tend to be more social stressors as they navigate new types of relationships, new levels of relationship intimacy with friends and romantic partners, and then also navigating who they are themselves, Dr. Moore said.

The COVID-19 pandemic is making some of these stressors felt more intensely, or adding new types of stress. Adolescents are navigating stressors related to missing school both academically and socially, social media, school shooting threats, and racial justice to name a few.

Some of these COVID-related stresses are shared by family members, but growing up in this particular moment provides a unique lens for them to view the world.

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Digital Stress: What Is It How Does It Affect Teens And How Can You Help

By RN Remedies blogger, Bianca Salvetti, MSN, CNS, CPNP Recently, I came across an article about digital stress and its effects on teenagers. Working in the Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine, this is often a topic of concern for teenagers and their families.

More now than ever, teenagers are constantly connected to their peers through cell phones or computer internet access. For adolescents, communication is an integral part of their social experience. This can lead to positive interactions for the adolescent but it has the potential for negative ones as well.

To help explain digital stress and how parents can help, I enlisted the help of Dr. Mari Radzik, Coordinator of Mental Health Services at the Division of Adolescent and Young Adult medicine.

What Ive seen in my practice over the years is how pervasive the online social media experience is for youth. Now that Facebook has moved into parents use, adolescents have moved to other social media sites such as Snap Chat or Instagram. Our youth today would much rather text or social network on their phones, Dr. Radzik said.

This type of connection with friends and significant others is often easier to hide from parents and caregivers and could leave the adolescent vulnerable to the effects of digital stress.

How Does Stress Affect Teenagers

Some teens become overloaded with stress. When this happens, it can lead to anxiety, withdrawal, aggression, physical illness, or poor coping skills such as drug and/or alcohol use. When we perceive a situation as difficult or painful, changes occur in our minds and bodies to prepare us to respond to danger.

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Good Stress Vs Bad Stress

This might sound strange but there are both negative and positive effects of stress. Everyone wants to wake up to the sweet smell of roses and bright sunshine without facing a single stressor in life but we all know its not possible. While most of the time stress can be devastating its also ironic that people feel the most energetic and prolific when they are under pressure.

Well, we all are familiar with what bad stress is and what it can do to us, here are some insights about the positive effects of good stress.

  • Experiencing stress from similar situations can train you to deal with those problems like a pro. Thus stress from similar situations makes you stronger.
  • Research has shown that moderate stress can boost the brains performance. Its because moderate stress strengthens the connection between neurons which improves attention and memory functions.

Almost all students groan at the mention of homework but for some students, homework is more than just a nuisance. The ones who fail to cope with loads of school work every day fall easy prey to teen stress. According to a recent study which surveyed 4300 students from both public and private schools to help determine the effect of school work on high school students, it was found that:

To better understand the effects of stress we must first learn about its causes through this stress and its effects on youth essay.

Good Stress Or Bad Stress

How Does Stress Affect Teenagers

Stress can be good or bad. Some amount of good stress and tension can bring out the best in a teenager. Bad stress can cause headache, nightmares, irritability and fatigue. Feeling stress over prolonged periods leads to distress and this in turn leads to various diseases. It is very important for parents to teach teens the art of handling stress and tension.

Also Check: What To Do When You Are Stressed About School

How Stress Affects Teens

Concerns about how stress affects teens extend to their parents, peers, and teachers. From time to time, people of all ages experience stress. Its a normal part of life, and, under some circumstances, stress could be beneficial. When teens experience stress, it helps them develop coping skills. However, if you believe the stress your teen is experiencing is too overwhelming, there are things you can do to help. One of them may include reaching out to an adolescent treatment center in North Carolina.

How Stress Affect Your Brain

It can disrupt synapse regulation, resulting in the loss of sociability and the avoidance of interactions with others. Stress can kill brain cells and even reduce the size of the brain. Chronic stress has a shrinking effect on the prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain responsible for memory and learning.

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Exploring Your Own Natural High

Whether you love surfing, biking, cooking, or gardening, consider your favorite pursuits as means to your own natural high. Invite young people to experiment with perceiving the activities that make them happy through the lens of a natural high, and then report back to you about how it made them feel. This can be a great bonding experience for the classroom and teach skills for dealing with stress for years to come. Check out yoga and meditation classes in your community — some might even be free. Visit websites such as Inward Bound or Guided Mindfulness Meditation, along with meditation apps that you can download. For the classroom, check out Natural High, an online source of free videos and curriculum for teachers to help youth identify and cultivate their passions.

Does your school have a dialogue with students about recognizing stress and exploring the best means of coping with it? What does that look like? Please share your thoughts in the comments section of this post.

High Blood Pressure In Young People

Study finds teen stress could affect health later in life

Continuously dealing with stressful situations lead to hypertension. Hypertension in teens then leads to heart disease and high blood pressure.

Youth needs to understand that physical and mental well-being is more important than getting good grades. They need to be educated about how to practice good time management, start healthy social relationships, do stress management, and manage work deadlines.

On the other hand, teachers need to understand that the quality of schoolwork assignments matters more than the quantity. They need to know that students can still learn challenging skills even when too much homework is not given to them.

Read Also: How To Know If You Have Stress

How Does Stress Affect The Teenage Brain

Adolescent brains may be more sensitive to the stress hormone cortisol and may feel its effects more quickly. The part of the brain that is responsible for shutting down the stress response, called the prefrontal cortex, is less developed in adolescents, so stress may also be experienced for longer periods.

Category : Problem Solving

Identify and Then Tackle the Problem

Sometimes, when you identify the source of stress, it can feel overwhelming. You may feel unable to address the problem. To get past that feeling, divide it into smaller pieces and manage one piece at a time. For example, you can make lists and timelines, and then identify a strategy from your plan to address each part of the problem.

Avoid What Stresses You Out Whenever Possible

Life is hard enough without having to deal with things that can be avoided. Bypass, rather than confront, problems when it is safe and wise to do so. Avoiding people, places, and things that trigger emotions can be an act of tremendous strength.

Conserve Energy

Instead of devoting energy to worrying about things you cant change, channel your energy differently. Focus on problems that can be fixed!

Also Check: How Can I Stop Stressing Out

Causes Of Teen Stress

There are many sources of stress for teens and adolescents, including:

  • school pressure and career decisions
  • after-school or summer jobs
  • pressure to wear certain types of clothing, jewelry or hairstyles
  • pressure to experiment with drugs, alcohol or sex
  • pressure to be a particular size or body shape
  • dealing with the physical and cognitive changes of puberty
  • family and peer conflicts
  • being bullied or exposed to violence or sexual harassment
  • crammed schedules, juggling school, sports, after-school activities, social life and family obligations

Teen Stress And Anxiety: Facts And Statistics

How Does Stress Affect Teenagers

April is Stress Awareness Month. We will publish a series of helpful articles on the topic over the next few weeks, so keep checking back or to get notified.

Stress is part of life for everyone. From children to adolescents to adults, we all deal with some amount of stress every day of our lives. Its normal. Complications begin when stress becomes chronic, which means that, over a six-month period, the stressful days outnumber the non-stressful days. Chronic stress has significant negative physical and emotional effects for everyone, not only adults.

Chronic stress can either cause or contribute to the following physical problems:

  • High blood pressure

Chronic stress can either cause or contribute to the following emotional issues:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety

Well focus on that last bullet point: anxiety.

Like stress, anxiety is part of life for everyone. We all deal with a little bit of anxiety every day. It only becomes a problem when it persists, and we lack the coping skills to process the associated symptoms in healthy and productive ways. If your teen complains about being stressed or anxious, you should take it seriously. For adults, its both tempting and easy to minimize teen stress and anxiety because well, from our perspective, they dont have to deal with half of what we do.

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Helping When Learning How Stress Affects Teens

When youre learning about the causes and signs regarding how stress affects teens, there are ways you can help. If you suspect your teen is experiencing more stress than they can handle, talk to them. During that conversation, try to figure out whats happening and why theyre having these feelings. Identifying to trigger for their stress makes it a lot easier to help them address the issue. Treating the cause also helps teens learn how to manage this stress healthily. At a mental health treatment center, we can help your teen attain this goal.

The Interaction Of Adolescence And Stress History On Hormonalresponsiveness

Similar to age, previous experience with stressors can also shapeones hormonal stress responsiveness . For example, an adult animalrepeatedly exposed to the same stressor displays a habituatedhormonal response compared to an adult exposed to that stressor for the first time.On the other hand, if an animal experiences the same stressor over and over againand is then hit with a novel stressor , a sensitized hormonalresponse is exhibited above that evoked by the novel stressor alone. Theseexperience-dependent changes in HPA reactivity are different before and afteradolescent development. In particular, homotypic stress leads to habituation inadults, but not in pre-adolescent males , while heterotypic stress leads to a similar peak response atboth ages, but a slower recovery in animals prior to adolescence . It is currently unknown at what time duringadolescence development these responses to homotypic and heterotypic stressorsassume their adult-like patterns.

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