As a parent, it is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of mental illness in teens. Mental illness affects one in five teens, so it is important for parents to know what to look out for and how to get help if needed. Knowing the signs can help you intervene early and ensure your teen gets the support they need.

Common Signs of Mental Illness in Teens

Mental illness can manifest itself differently from person to person, but there are some common signs that can indicate a teen may be struggling with their mental health. Some of the most common signs of mental illness in teens include:

Changes in sleeping or eating habits

Changes in our eating habits are often caused by either external or internal factors. External factors may include work demands, travel, lack of time or access to healthy food options, or simply an inability to stick to a routine due to other commitments. Internal factors could include stress, anxiety, depression, hormonal imbalances, or certain medical conditions. It is important to identify the underlying cause so that you can take steps to address it.

Low self-esteem or feelings of worthlessness

Low self-esteem and feelings of worthlessness can be crippling, often leading to depression and anxiety. These feelings can have a negative impact on all aspects of life, from job performance to relationships. Fortunately, there are many ways to overcome these issues.

Difficulty concentrating or focusing on tasks

The best way to make sure you stay focused is to break down large tasks into smaller goals. When you have an overwhelming task ahead of you, it can be hard to stay motivated and remain concentrated on the task at hand. Breaking it down into smaller pieces makes it easier to focus by providing short-term goals that are more achievable than one large goal.

Substance abuse

Substance abuse is defined as using any illegal drug or controlled substance without a valid prescription. It encompasses the recreational use of substances such as marijuana and cocaine, as well as the misuse of legally prescribed medication like opioids. Substance abuse can cause physical harm to those who are using, including increased risk of accidents and illness due to weakened immune systems, organ damage due to overdose, and long-term mental health issues.

If you notice any changes in your teen’s behavior that could indicate they may be struggling with their mental health, it is important to take action right away. Talking openly with your teen about their feelings can help them feel supported and encourage them to seek professional help if necessary.

If you have concerns about your teen’s mental health, speaking with a doctor or therapist may provide more insight into what is going on and provide resources for getting help if needed. It is also important to remember that it is normal for teenagers to experience mood swings during this stage of development—it does not necessarily mean they are suffering from a mental illness. But if these changes persist over time and interfere with everyday life, then it might be time to seek professional help.

No parent wants their child to suffer from a mental illness, but being aware of the warning signs can make all the difference when it comes to getting them the help they need. If you notice any signs that could indicate your teen may be struggling with their mental health, talking openly with them about their feelings can be an effective first step towards helping them get back on track.

You should also consider seeking advice from a qualified medical professional who can provide more insight into what is going on and provide resources for getting additional help if needed. Taking action early on can improve your teen’s quality of life and set them up for success down the road.