What to Know About Mental Health Awareness Month and Teen Wellness

What to Know About Mental Health Awareness Month and Teen Wellness

May is Mental Health Awareness Month (also known as Mental Health Month), and it’s a key time to shed light on mental health issues for people of all demographics. Established to encourage open conversations about mental health, this month offers a pivotal opportunity to focus on the mental wellness journey. Given that this year’s theme is “Where to Start: Mental Health in a Changing World,” it’s well worth focusing on wellness in teens, as there’s no stage of life more full of changes or emotional upheaval than adolescence. 

Here are some change-related stressors that many teens face — and how you can help. 

The Adolescent Odyssey: Navigating Unavoidable Change

Even a normal, healthy adolescence is marked by pivotal life changes that can be both exhilarating and overwhelming. Teens undergo multiple forms of stark transformation over the course of just a few years, including:

  • Changes in physical development, which can affect teens’ self-image and confidence
  • Fluctuating hormones, which can cause mood swings and heightened emotions
  • Increasing academic challenges, with the added pressure to excel in school in order to gain admission to college, or make other decisions about the future
  • Shifting dynamics in friendships, peer pressure, family relationships, dating, and more
  • Reaching legal adulthood, in which teens can vote and join the military

Additional Changes: When Life Adds More

On top of these normal changes, teens often face additional major life events that can make it exceedingly difficult to maintain good mental health. Examples can include things like:

  • Changes in home and family dynamics, such as divorcing parents, a house move, changing financial circumstances, or a death in the family
  • Identifying and coming out as an LGBTQ+ individual 
  • Bullying and cyberbullying
  • Experiencing a significant illness, injury, or other life-changing incident

Supporting Teen Mental Health: How We Can Help

Fostering a supportive environment for teens is crucial in promoting their mental health. Here are ways to offer support, particularly in the face of change:

  • Empathy and open communication. Encourage honest discussions about feelings, challenges, and mental health without judgment.
  • Education and advocacy. Provide resources and information to help teens understand their experiences and normalize seeking help. Advocate for access to counseling or therapy when needed, emphasizing that it’s a sign of strength, not weakness.
  • Community outlets. Create safe spaces for teens to express themselves and feel accepted, whether in schools, clubs, or online platforms.

Help Teens Manage Mental Health Better With ReGroup Foundation

ReGroup Foundation is a non-profit that helps pre-teens, teens, and their families anonymously share and benefit from mental health success stories. Too often, the best resources and practices in teen mental health care remain under the radar. 

We want all families to benefit from the triumphs of those who have “been there, done that” where teen mental health issues are concerned. We make this possible by collecting family reviews of local mental health caregivers and facilities as well as personal strategies for helping teens recover from wellness challenges.

In only 15 minutes, you can begin making a world of difference in the lives of other teens and their families — just by anonymously sharing your successes. Register today and start sharing your reviews and mental health insights!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *