The arts are a powerful thing. Whether acting in a play, singing a song, performing a dance, drawing a picture or writing a poem, the arts allow people to express themselves and their ideas without having to put them in to words. This is just one of the many reasons expressive arts therapy has become popular, particularly for special needs children.
What Is Expressive Art Therapy?
Teens go through a series of emotional and physical changes that can result in baffling behavior. Knowing what is normal and what is not can help parents spot emerging mental health issues.
Your child turns into an alien about the time she turns 12 or 13. Not only are you, as a parent, baffled by these new behaviors, but your teen is also frequently baffled and alarmed at the new thoughts and feelings she is experiencing.
The short story of puberty is that at some point in a child’s growth—usually between the ages of 12-15—the brain begins releasing gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), a hormone that spurs the pituitary gland to... Continue reading →
McKenzie was a good student. As a high school junior, she was active in sports and clubs at her high school while still managing to maintain a nearly perfect 4.0 GPA. Her parents were proud of her hard work, and her teachers and coaches loved her dedication and responsiveness. But McKenzie was stressed beyond the breaking point, suffering from feelings of burnout, worried that she wouldn’t be able to keep it up and would end up letting herself, her parents, her teammates, her teachers, and her coaches down.
One day, she tried something she’d heard other girls were doing. She snuck a sharp, small knife from the kitchen and took it to her bedroom. After rolling up her sleeve, she slid the knife blade up the inside of her arm—just hard enough to draw a bead of blood. She stared,... Continue reading →
Since time immemorial, teens have been drawn to things that can potentially harm them, such as illicit drugs and alcohol. Forbidden substances are fascinating substances, especially when the adults or respected peers in a teen’s life seem to enjoy using them. If a teen is depressed or has anxiety issues, drugs and alcohol can also help to temporarily alleviate pain and provide an escape from what feels like an unbearable living situation.
While experimentation with drugs and alcohol doesn’t mean your teen will automatically become an addict, such experimentation can lead to serious harm in a teen’s growing body and brain. For some, innocent experimentation can, indeed, lead to dependence or addiction. Certainly the outward behaviors of a teen suffering from drug or alcohol abuse... Continue reading →
Teenage girls are twice as likely as teenage boys to be diagnosed with a mood disorder such as depression. The reason may stem back to early evolutionary advantages and how girls and boys are differently wired as pertains to emotional stimuli. Girls tend to emotionally mature more quickly than boys and are biologically wired to nurture babies and children, while boys are biologically wired to spread their seed and tend to the protection of the tribe. This evolutionary advantage might be a bit of a disadvantage in the modern world where teens spend around six or so years in a sort of limbo—not yet old enough to be treated as adults and too old to be treated as children. Whatever the reasons, the teen years are fertile ground for depression and anxiety to develop in teen girls.