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What Causes Anxiety in Teens?

Adolescent looking distressed while experiencing anxiety in teens

Anxiety is an incredibly common issue among teens. It is estimated that over 20% of adolescents in the U.S. suffer from some form of anxiety disorder. Anxiety in teens can be caused by everything from significant changes to family issues. Symptoms of anxiety in teens may cause disruptions and diminish overall well-being. Fortunately, anxiety treatment is available and may significantly improve an adolescent’s quality of life.

Imagine Spokane offers comprehensive mental and behavioral health care services specifically tailored to teenagers aged 12-17 suffering from anxiety disorders. Our professional staff strives to provide a safe environment where kids can openly share their thoughts and feelings without judgment or ridicule. The ultimate goal of Imagine Spokane’s services is to help teens develop healthy coping skills to reduce the effects of anxiety in their daily lives. If your teen is struggling with an anxiety disorder, do not hesitate to contact us at 888.384.3143 today.

What Are Common Causes of Anxiety in Teens?

Parenting can be challenging, especially when dealing with psychological problems that affect children. Anxiety in teens is a common mental health issue that can lead to problems like low self-esteem, academic difficulties, and even substance abuse. Physical and mental symptoms of anxiety in teens may include:

  • Stomachaches
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Sweating
  • Excessive worry
  • Irritability
  • Feeling overwhelmed or panicky
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Isolating themselves from friends and family

As a parent, it is crucial to understand what causes anxiety in teens, so you can help your children manage their symptoms and avoid potential problems. The following are common causes of anxiety in teens:

Academic and Social Pressures

One of the leading causes of anxiety in teens is academic and social pressure. As children become teenagers, they face increasing demands from school, friends, and family. This can lead to stress, anxiety, and even depression. Academic pressures like exams, assignments, and grades can be overwhelming for some teens, leading to anxiety about their performance. On the other hand, social pressures like fitting in with peers, maintaining social status, and dealing with conflicts can add to a teenager’s stress levels.

Parents can help their children manage their stress levels by creating a supportive environment at home. Be available to your teen for comfort and support; this can help reduce their anxiety. Encourage them to take breaks and practice self-care routines like exercise, reading, and meditation. Parents can also help their kids manage social pressures by providing guidance and role-modeling healthy behaviors.

Family Issues

Family issues like divorce, financial difficulties, or a serious illness can harm a teenager’s mental health. These can be significant changes that can trigger anxiety and even depression in some teens.

Talking to your child, listening to them, and being open can go a long way in helping them cope with family issues that may cause anxiety. As parents, be understanding and provide emotional and psychological support to your children. Encourage them to express their thoughts and feelings in a way they feel comfortable. Seek professional support or therapy if necessary.

Traumatic Events

Traumatic events such as natural disasters, accidents, or violence can cause teen anxiety. Teenagers who experience such events may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).

If your teenager has experienced a traumatic event, it is essential to prioritize their mental health. Encourage them to seek help from a mental health professional or therapist. Be available for your teen and offer them practical support like attending therapy sessions.


Sometimes anxiety can run in families. Genetics plays a vital role in determining whether someone is susceptible to anxiety. Children with a family history of anxiety may be at higher risk of developing it.

Parents can take a proactive approach to mental health and monitor any signs of anxiety in their children. Support them by finding a therapist nearby and helping them schedule appointments. Once they start treatment, be supportive and encouraging with it.

Anxiety in teens is a common problem that can affect a teenager’s mental and physical well-being. Parents of adolescents who need mental health care can play a vital role in identifying the common causes of anxiety and helping their children manage their symptoms. By supporting them and creating a healthy environment at home, you can help teenagers overcome anxiety and lead happy, healthy lives.

Find Anxiety Treatment at Imagine Spokane

At Imagine Spokane, we understand how difficult it can be for teens with anxiety to get help. That’s why we strive to provide comprehensive mental and behavioral health treatment for adolescents in a safe and supportive environment. Our counselors specialize in how to cope with anxiety as a teen and use evidence-based approaches designed for long-term success. With individualized treatment plans tailored to each patient’s specific needs, our team is dedicated to helping individuals lead healthier lives. If you are concerned about your child’s mental health, please don’t hesitate to reach out at 888.384.3143 or complete our contact form.