Parenting an Adolescent or Teen With Anxiety and Depression

Depression and anxiety are two mental health issues that are common among adolescents and teens during ordinary times. However, the ongoing social isolation, economic stress, and fear caused by COVID-19 has lead to pandemic anxiety and depression. That is because the pandemic exacerbated the stress that adolescents and teens already face, leading to a youth mental health crisis in the United States.

Recent studies on the impact of COVID-19 on the mental health of adolescents and teens have found that the depression and anxiety during the pandemic has significantly increased among young people, even among those who did not have any depression or anxiety symptoms prior to the pandemic. In 2021, emergency room visits for suicide attempts were more than 50 percent higher for adolescent girls compared to early 2019.

Even though the pandemic seems to be winding down, adolescents and teens are now struggling with a new stressor  — the horrific news stories coming out of Ukraine, and what this dangerous war could mean for them. The good news is that there are lots of things that you can do as a parent to help your child if they are experiencing anxiety or depression. It requires listening to them and watching closely.