St. Petersburg Youth Farm

Healthy balance

BY SHANTASIA NORTHERN, 15, Youth Farm Participant

Mental health is something talked about more and more these days, but what’s crazy is that teens deal with it almost every day. Teens with mental health issues have to cope with stressful situations at home and school while managing their social lives.

More than 45 percent of teens suffer from a mental issue/disorder, and one in five teens has a mental illness. A teen suffering from mental illness should not be viewed as someone suffering from a physical illness, though it should be taken just as seriously.

Mental illness is not a choice or a failure; it can affect anyone. When someone is suffering from a mental issue or illness, it makes the things you do in life harder.

For example, if someone experiences a loss of a loved one, they can begin to feel depressed; if that depressed mood continues to cause distress or gets in the way of normal daily functions, the person may benefit from professional care.

Mental health plays a role in our lives, from how we interact with others, our personal care, and our environment. Balancing our inner and outer world is something that teens have trouble with, but given the tools and space to understand themselves and solve problems with family, school, and social life can allow for growth and success.

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