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Specialities

Specialities

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Stress Management & Academic Pressure

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adolescence

Adolescence

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anxiety

Anxiety

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shape

Stress Management & Academic Pressure

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adolescence

Adolescence

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anxiety

Anxiety

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depression

Depression

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transition

Life Transitions

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depression

Depression

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transition

Life Transitions

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Discussion Group Schedules & Sign Up

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Stress Management and Academic Pressure

  
Today’s college-bound adolescents face extraordinary demands, and experience unprecedented levels of stress. As societal expectations of high school achievement grow and college acceptance rates drop, the competition to attend a top-notch college has intensified greatly. Teenagers live with greater pressure to achieve academically, as well as participate in multiple extra-curricular activities such as philanthropy, sports and work.

In a 2010 study conducted by researchers at Stanford University, “70% of high school students reported that they felt often or always stressed by their schoolwork,” while 56% stated that they were “often or always worrying about such things as grades, tests and college acceptance.” High school students focused on attaining higher education feel compelled to keep up with their competitive peers, fearing that if they do not, they will jeopardize potential admission to prestigious universities, future wealth and prominence. The magnitude of the situation had led some to call student stress an epidemic.

Stress contributes to long-term health problems including, but not limited, to tobacco, alcohol and other drug use, sexually transmitted diseases, skeletal fractures, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, stroke, cancer, hypertension. In addition, ongoing stress leads to sleep problems, depression, anxiety, nightmares, and, in some cases, suicide.

Recognizing that the demands placed on teenagers today will not decrease anytime soon, I work with each client to develop strengths-based approaches to managing stress and buffer the negative impact of living with stress. In addition to improving a client’s quality of life, the implementation of stress management skills may also improve the client’s focus and concentration, resulting in less time spent studying and increased “down-time” for healthy relaxation.

Adolescence

 
Today’s adolescents face a great deal of pressure and stress. Adolescents undergo tremendous growth, and a variety of novel challenges, including developmental and hormonal changes, new social experiences, increased responsibility and accountability, and striving for independence and a feeling of competence. Adolescence is a critical period in the healthy formation of a sense of self, autonomy, and self-confidence; the teenage years also contribute to the formation of healthy adult relationships.

Teens often do not have a sense of what to do with the feelings they have, and they may demonstrate their confusion or frustration in destructive ways or use ineffective coping strategies. Research has shown that a relationship with a supportive adult is a key factor that contributes to the development of resilience, self-esteem and an integrated sense of self.

Typical issues teens face:

  • Academic pressure
  • Peer pressure
  • Peer relationship problems
  • Parent relationship problems or changes in the relationship
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Substance use
  • Divorce

Anxiety

 
Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress, such as when you have an exam or speak in front of an audience. However, anxiety that is excessive, and continues, interfering with daily living is a sign of need for professional help.
 

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Excessive worry
  • Restlessness or feeling on edge
  • Easily fatigues
  • Difficulty concentrating or mind going blank
  • Muscle tension
  • Sleep disturbance (difficulty falling or staying asleep)

Stress

 
Stress is a typical part of daily life. Sources of stress include school, relationships, work and finances. Stress occurs when we face challenges and feel unprepared or unequipped to handle those challenges. Chronic stress or stress dealing with major life challenges or changes may significantly impact your physical health and your emotional wellbeing.
 

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Irritability, feeling anxious
  • Worrying about the future
  • Preoccupation with thoughts or tasks, racing thoughts
  • Loss of appetite or overeating
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Headaches, muscle tension
  • Susceptibility to illness

Depression

 
While it is normal to occasionally experience the blues or feel down, depression is more than just feeling down in the dumps for a few days. Depression is feeling down, experiencing low energy and feeling hopeless for weeks at a time. Depression is a serious medical illness; it is not imaginary.
 

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Feeling, sad, empty or depressed
  • Feelings of hopelessness
  • Feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Fatigue or low energy
  • Irritability, anger, edginess
  • Change in eating habits
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Isolation or decreased interest in social activities
  • Decreased pleasure in activities usually enjoyed
  • Increased worry about health issues; recurrent illness

Life Transitions

 

  • Applying to college
  • Leaving for college
  • Living on one’s own for the first time
  • First job
  • Getting married
  • Having a baby
  • Losing a job
  • “The empty nest”
  • Marital problems
  • Divorce
  • Aging
  • Loss and bereavement