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Recognizable Signs of Trauma in Teens

signs of trauma in teens

When someone experiences a traumatic event, it can affect them no matter their age, sex, or religion. Trauma is a deeply distressing or disturbing event with lingering adverse emotional effects. For teens, trauma can be tough to process if they do not understand the feelings and emotions the trauma creates. Recognizing the signs of trauma in teens can be difficult as they typically face emotional extremes every day. A trauma therapy program can help parents and teens recognize the signs of trauma and begin to process them in a healthy manner.

At Imagine Nampa, we specialize in treating mental health disorders in teens aged 12-17. We can help teens begin healing from trauma and form healthy coping skills to process and communicate how they feel. If you or your teen son or daughter is struggling with trauma, call 888.503.4604 today to learn more about how to recognize the signs of trauma in teens. 

What Are the 3 Types of Trauma?

Trauma can occur from several different events, such as domestic abuse, bullying, and the death of a family member or close friend. Most trauma is a single event, but some ongoing forms of trauma can severely affect a teen’s development. The three types of trauma include:

  • Acute trauma – Acute trauma is a single event that causes a strong emotional response. It can be a car accident or witnessing a violent event. Teens may seem like they are ok but may begin feeling apprehensive about getting into a car or driving themselves to school.
  • Chronic trauma – Chronic trauma comes from a traumatic event over an extended period. Domestic abuse, bullying, and the COVID pandemic are examples of chronic trauma. This type of trauma can lead to growing depression and potentially self-harm and suicidal thoughts.
  • Complex trauma – Complex trauma is multiple traumatic events that are invasive and of an interpersonal nature. It has wide-ranging, long-term effects that can severely affect the patient’s mental and physical health. Types of complex trauma include incest, sexual abuse, human trafficking, and continuing emotional or physical abuse.

At Imagine Nampa, our trauma therapy program can help teens begin healing from trauma by learning how to openly talk about their feelings and develop coping skills in a safe and encouraging environment.

Recognizing the Signs of Trauma in Teens

Teens who experience trauma are at a higher risk of forming long-lasting mental health disorders. Your teen’s brain is still developing. This means that while teens are at a higher risk, they can also heal from the trauma faster, with better chances of not letting it affect them as they get older. 

It is crucial for your teen’s mental health that you get them into a trauma treatment program as soon as possible to reduce the risk of permanent mental health issues. If you think your teen is struggling with a recent or past trauma, look for these behavioral signs:

  • Actively avoiding people, places, or things associated with the trauma
  • Sudden fits of rage or angry outbursts over seemingly nothing
  • Having feelings of shame and guilt
  • Growing grief or depression
  • Feeling numb or nothing at all
  • Having nightmares and changes in their sleeping habits 
  • Continuously worrying about facing people or places related to the trauma

Begin Healing at Imagine Nampa

Teens face raging hormones and emotions on a daily basis. When they experience sudden or ongoing trauma, it can negatively affect their development and hinder their potential. At Imagine Nampa, we use a mixture of behavioral, family, and holistic therapy to help teens recover from traumatic events and lead happy and productive lives. Our outpatient treatment programs include:

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Dialectical behavior therapy
  • Trauma therapy
  • Crisis intervention
  • Family therapy
  • Group and individual therapy

If you think your teen son or daughter is struggling with a traumatic event, call 888.503.4604 today to speak with our caring staff about recognizing the signs of trauma in teens.