Teenagers face real problems on a daily basis
during the most awkward growth stages of
their lives; between 13 and 19-years-old.
During this time, teens are exposed to some
overwhelming external and internal struggles.
Teens go through, and are expected to cope
with hormonal changes, puberty, social and
parental forces, work and school pressures, as
well as encountering many conditions and
problems. Teens feel overwhelmed when
faced with unprecedented stresses concerning
school and college, and career confusion
situations. Those who have absentee parents
are exposed to more unfavorable states of life.
The issues that teenagers face today vary but
these issues can be dealt with easily if
parents and other guardians can understand
the symptoms of their problems. Parents need
to approach their children, who have been
suffering from one or more teenage problems,
carefully and in a friendly manner to discuss
the problem(s). Many teens feel
misunderstood. It is vital that their feelings
and thoughts are validated and that the
validation comes from their parents.
The most common problems that teenagers
face today include:
Self-Esteem and Body Image
Cyber Addiction
Drinking and Smoking
Teen Pregnancy
Underage Sex
Child Abuse
Peer-Pressure and Competition
Eating Disorders
Surprisingly, all
of these
problems are
connected to one
another, like a
chain reaction.
When the teens
face self-esteem
and body image
problems, they
can become
resulting in eating disorders. The teens start
feeling stress when they are exposed to peer-
pressure and competition at school, or child
abuse at home. Many teens take to drinking
and smoking in order to relieve the stress.
Many may run away from home, play
computer games, and start chatting online
with strangers. Computer games and online
chatting can result in addiction. Many teens
feel further stress when they get bullied
online. Others may become easy targets of
online predators and once treated badly, they
turn to more harmful practices. Those who
cannot find love at home or support at schools
start to build relationships with friends in
school or local areas, resulting in unsafe or
underage sex, and possible teen pregnancy.
Many become addicted to drugs and harm
themselves when they cannot get results.
Many teens resort to crimes once they feel
they cannot get any help or support.
However, the most common problems
teenagers face today are described below:
Self-Esteem and Body Image
Teenagers undergo and have to
cope with numerous body
changes. Some teenagers feel
too fat, too skinny, too tall, too
short, etc. This feeling leads
them to spend time wishing
they were not too skinny, too
short, their hair was not too
curly or vice versa. The
problem with this feeling is
that it affects their self-image.
As a teenage boy or girl’s body
changes, so does the self.
When they do not like
something in themselves, they
have self-esteem and body
image problems. They also
perceive others, particularly
schoolmates, to view them as
they view themselves. They can suffer more
from these problems when they have trouble
Hormonal changes have huge effects on the
general growth and mood of the teens.
Puberty changes tempt teenagers to compare
themselves with people around them and
when they find they do not match their
standards, they feel low. They also compare
themselves with those seen on TV, in movies,
and in the magazines. Most youths’ ability to
develop positive self-esteem is affected by
family life and parental criticism. Teenagers
who experience negative comments about
their appearances, the way they talk, etc stuff
also develop poor self-esteem and body image.
Bullying is one of the worst teenage problems
and affects millions of youths. Bullying causes
fear in the minds of kids, and makes them
nervous going to school each day. The adults
do not always witness the bullying in their
lives. The teenage children may be subject to
heavy bullying as they may not understand
how extreme it can get. Any form of bullying
is relentless, causing the affected teenagers to
live in a state of constant fear. Two of the
prime reasons teens are bullied are their
appearance and social status. Bullying has
caused many serious and life threatening
problems for bullied teens. As they get bullied
often in school, their academics, and mental
health suffer.
Bullying can be cruel when it becomes
physical attacks on the victims. Some bullies
attack their targets physically while others
repeatedly spew verbal insults, affecting the
psychology of the affected teens.
The latest edition of bullying is cyberbullying.
It can get as worse as it gets in the real life
experience of the teens. Cyberbullies use
cruel instant messages, text messages, emails
online, and voice messages in many cases.
Bullying is a very offensive behavior and
crime. Bullying leads to more violent behavior
in the bullies in their adult years. They
eventually get rejected by their peers, lose
friendships and become depressed as they
age. Parents, teachers, and people in general
should educate their teenagers about bullying
and tell them to report any act of bullying to
them. Media can also educate the teenage
children about bullying when some teenagers
are bullies.
Depression is
one of the worst
problems that
some teenagers
suffer from and
it can lead to
more problems
in the future.
Depression may
arise from poor
self-esteem and
body image
problems. If that is the reason of depression in
a teen, then parents should talk to the teen,
listen to their child, comfort him or her, and
accept their child for who they are. It is
crucial that teens feel validated in their
feelings and thoughts because what they are
going through is a real part of their lives.
Parents and guardians should not judge or
criticize their feelings or thoughts. They
should tell the teen how important it is to
have high self-esteem and be comfortable in
their body.
Depression symptoms in teenagers may be
exhibited in various ways. Changes in sleep
patterns, eating habits, declined interest in
normal and healthy activities, dropping grades
in school and college, and preferred isolation
are all signs of depression. When teenagers
exhibit one or all of these symptoms parents
should intervene immediately. If teenagers
begin talking about their depression, then
they should be allowed to express their
feelings, and parents should validate their
feelings by listening to them without
interrupting the conversation.
Drugs and Alcohol
Youths, particularly those who are in their
early teens who drink, put themselves at risks
for many problems. For example, they face
problems with the law, at school, with their
parents, and peers. In the USA, drug abuse is
a major problem affecting millions of
teenagers, along with their parents and
families. It is an imperative that parents,
schools, media, etc, educate the young
children about the dangers of drugs and
alcohol, and how drugs affect their bodies. If
they are taught properly, then they will be
able to make an educated choice.
Cyber Addiction
The Internet
benefits in
developing a
teen’s ability
to grow with
and other
skills. However, using the internet,
particularly the social networking websites,
unsafely puts the teenagers at very high risk
for many problems. When children spend
more than enough or agreeable time online
they tend to be cyber addicts. As they spend
more time on social networking, gaming, and
other websites, particularly adult sites, they
suffer from cyber addiction.
Cyber addiction can be just as harmful as
addiction to drugs or drinking alcohol.
Teenagers who spend unhealthy amounts of
time on the Internet or online suffer from a
condition recognized as Internet Addiction
Disorder (IAD). Those who have IAD
conditions may experience distress,
withdrawal symptoms including obsessive
thoughts, tremors, and other mental and
physical problems. Cyber addiction impairs
the quality of their lives. Parents should talk
to their children and agree on a list of rules
that clearly say when to use the internet,
which sites they should visit and what safety
measures they should follow. Teachers can
also ensure safe browsing of the web at
schools and colleges for teenage students.
Final Thoughts
Problems that teenagers are faced with today
are multifarious but interrelated in many
cases. One problem invites another, then to
more problems. Parents, teachers and other
guardians should be well aware of the
problems that today’s teenagers are facing
and be prepared to eliminate the problems to
their best abilities. The sad fact is, even in
solid and stable family units, teenagers may
face with uncertainly, confusion and wrong
directions involving their lives. Those who
have witnessed and experienced broken
homes, unsafe sex, alcohol, drug abuse, and
bullying issues, show themselves differently
in the community they live in. Proper
parenting is vital, especially in the very
formative years of the children, so that they
can grow up with the manners and teachings
taught by their parents.
by: sha

Temi Badmus
Temi Badmus
Temi Badmus is a Food scientist and an Art enthusiast. Her desire is to give a listening ear to people and to give an opportunity for everyone to be heard. Has any one told you that you are special? Yes, you are. You were beautifully designed, you are relevant to this generation and very special to me. Connect with me on LinkedIn


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