According to the World Health Organization (WHO), it is estimated that one in seven 10–19-year-olds experience mental health conditions globally. Sadly, many of these go unrecognized and untreated, which can then lead to more significant problems.
Adolescent mental health services are an important element of ensuring that young people receive the necessary support and treatment they need to improve their health and wellbeing and to go on to lead productive and fulfilling lives.
There are many physical, emotional, and social factors that can make adolescents vulnerable to mental health problems. Working with adolescents to promote their psychological well-being and ensuring they have access to appropriate mental health care are critical for their health and wellbeing,both during adolescence and adulthood.
- What Are the Most Common Mental Health Issues in Adolescents?
There are a range of mental health disorders that can affect adolescents and have a significant impact on mental and physical wellbeing. They can affect all areas of life, such as self-esteem, education, physical health, relationships, and more. These include:
- Emotional disorders such as anxiety and depression. Anxiety disorders are the most common type of emotional disorder in adolescents, particularly in older adolescents.
- Behavioral disorders, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and conduct disorder, are more common among younger adolescents.
- Eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia, compulsive overeating, and binge eating. They can often emerge during adolescence and young adulthood and involve abnormal eating behaviors and preoccupation with food and may be accompanied by concerns about body weight and shape.
- Psychosis refers to when a person loses some contact with reality, which might involve seeing or hearing things that aren’t there (hallucinations) or believing things that aren’t true (delusions). Conditions that have symptoms of psychosis, such as schizophrenia, often emerge in late adolescence or early adulthood.
- Suicide and self-harm. The fourth leading cause of death in older adolescentsissuicide. A range of factors can lead to self-harm and feeling suicidal, such as bullying, abuse, school pressures, and depression.
- Risk-taking behaviors, such as substance abuse or sexual risk-taking, can start during adolescence and are often used as ways of coping with emotional difficulties.
- Who Can Adolescent Mental Health Services Help?
Adolescent mental health services can help adolescents going through a wide range of mental health issues, which include:
- Anxiety disorders and panic attacks
- Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Bipolar disorder
- Eating disorders
- Substance abuse disorders
- Attention deficit disorder (ADD) and attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD)
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Acute stress disorder
- Adjustment disorder
- Conduct disorder
- Suicidal thoughts
- Hallucinations and delusions
- What is the Role of Adolescent Mental Health Services?
Adolescent mental health services consist of a dedicated team of professionals that provide care to focus on an individual’s unique needs and issues that are impacting their ability to manage day-to-day life. A range of effective, evidence-based therapeutic interventions are used to enable the patients to lead happier, more productive, and rewarding lives.
Treatment uses a holistic approach and aims to encourage individuals to identify problems impacting their lives, find ways to bring about positive change, and develop coping strategies and skills to better manage health and wellbeing.
- Who Works for Adolescent Mental Health Services?
Adolescent mental health services consist of a team of highly skilled and experienced providers.These can include:
- Counselors and therapists, who help individuals understand themselves better, learn how things in the past may affect them now, and develop coping strategies.
- Family therapists work with the individual and their family to help improve relationships and make positive changes at home.
- Psychiatrists are specially trained doctors who help with mental health problems and can also prescribe medication.
- Social workers help coordinate care with the necessary providers and ensure the individual and their family get suitable/additional support.
Sometimes, multiple providers are necessary to offer the right support and coordinate care successfully. The needs of the individual will determine which providers are required.
- What Treatments Are Used?
Establishing the appropriate treatment will depend on a variety of factors, such as the type and severity of mental health problem, the age of the individual, and whether there are any underlying or co-occurring physical health or substance abuse problems. Treatments may include:
- Assessment and diagnostics
- ADHD evaluations
- Behavior therapies, such as psychological counseling, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), psychodynamic therapy, and solution-focused brief therapy
- Family or group therapy
- Psychoeducation regarding disorders
- Interventions to address any co-occurring mental health disorders
- Experiential therapy programs, such as music therapy, art therapy, or play therapy
- Care coordination and referring clients to other services when required
- Outpatient therapy services
- Telehealth services
- How Do I Access Adolescent Mental Health Services?
Adolescent mental health services can be accessed through a variety of avenues, such as:
- A family member or friend
- Primary care physicians
- Department of Social Services
- Office of Children’s’ Services (CSA)
- Other behavioral health agency
- Foster care agencies
- Managed care organizations
- Community partners
- Juvenile detention centers
Adolescent Mental Health Services Near Me in Richmond, VA
If you or a loved one is in need of psychiatric support, contact EPIC Health Partners LLC. Our team of highly skilled and experienced professional counselors, social workers, and dedicated supporting staff provide person-centered care to children and adults.We are a community-based behavioral health facility that provides clients with needed mental and behavioral health assessments and services.