Helping Your Teen Daughter through Anxiety
If your troubled teenage daughter is currently suffering from anxiety or depression, you have several actions that you can take to help her in her recovery process.
It is crucial for parents of an anxiety-ridden teenage girl to empathize with what she is going through. By developing a deeper understanding of her issues, as well as giving credibility to said issues, a parent further communicates to their daughter that she has their unwavering support through her suffering – an absolute necessity for a clinically anxious, teenage girl’s recovery process.
ATTENTION PARENTS: NEVER IGNORE THE PROBLEM
We all know that simply ignoring a problem will not make it go away. This is particularly the case when it comes to supporting a troubled, or mentally ill teenage girl who is most likely suffering from a multitude of behavioral and mental issues.
When it comes to anxious teens, being taken seriously is everything. Unfortunately, this is often a problem that parents struggle with. Instead of taking their daughter’s anxiety seriously, many parents chalk up their daughter’s mental maladies as a ‘teenage phase’ and often ignore her seemingly overdramatic behavior entirely. This, of course, is the EXACT opposite of what a parent should do as it will almost certainly exacerbate her already severe condition.
Instead, any parent of a teenage girl who suffers from anxiety should consistently encourage their daughter to share her feelings. Needless to say, showing a suffering teen love and support is the most powerfully effective action a parent can take.
SPEND TIME WITH YOUR DAUGHTER
Spending time with your daughter is equally important as acknowledging her struggles with anxiety. Having said that, it is critical that the time you spend with her is quality time — free of distractions. One way that you can make this time more meaningful is by volunteering with your daughter. Helping others always seems to help people feel good about themselves. You should also make sure that your teen is not isolating herself from family and friends, something that has the potential to be detrimental to your child’s wellbeing.
SUPPORT HER PHYSICAL HEALTH
While psychological and social health is vital for the process of coping with depression, it is paramount to emphasize the importance of your daughter’s physical health as well. You should encourage your child to abandon her chair in front of the computer to enjoy something more active. Physical activity will not only improve cardiovascular conditioning, but it can also trigger serotonin, otherwise known as the brain’s ‘happy feelings.’
When you invest in the physical health of your daughter, you are simultaneously promoting brain health and creating the foundation for proper mood support — things that will have an immense impact on her ability to effectively cope with depression. Poor eating and inadequate sleep will make it more difficult for her to deal with her depression.
No matter what approach you decide to take in helping your daughter deal with her depression, it is essential that you understand her feelings are legitimate. The fact that her thoughts and feelings may seem illogical to you does not diminish the impact they are having on her. Simply understanding that she is unhappy, can play a substantial role in helping her effectively cope with the depression.