Helping Your Teen Cope With Stress


The teen years are tough for everyone. Your teen is handling harder schoolwork, new social circles and maybe a part-time job, all with a brain that's still developing. That's a recipe for stress. Here's how to decode the signs of teen stress, and some ways to give support.

Know the signs

A stressed teen may seem irritable or angry, and they may cry easily. They may have headaches and stomach pains. They may sleep too much or not enough, and feel tired during the day. Your teen may seem withdrawn and overly worried. And, you may see signs of drug or alcohol use.

Be supportive

If your teen is having trouble with stress, you can help. Talk with your teen, and listen to what they say. Don't give advice if they don't ask for it. Spend time with them. Create rituals like family dinners and movie nights. Support the things they do. Try to be there for things like sports competitions and performances. And be a good role model.

Focus on fitness

Remember that it's easier to beat stress with a healthy body. So feed your teen nutritious meals and snacks. See that they get enough sleep. And encourage them to get regular exercise.

Avoid pitfalls

You may be tempted to solve your teen's problems for them. But don't do this. Part of growing up is learning to tackle stress on your own. So help guide them, but let them solve their own problems. Don't demand perfection. Your teen will make mistakes, and that's OK. If you see signs of depression or other mental health issues, get help as soon as possible.


With your patience and your guidance, your teen can learn to handle stress successfully.