Adolescents and Young Adults (16-25 years)

Transitioning from being a teenager to an adult can be a difficult time for adolescents and young people. Teenagers must face and overcome many changes and challenges in their adolescent years. More recently we have noticed that these difficulties are not just confined to the teen years and can extend into young adulthood. These challenges can become overwhelming for young people leading to high stress levels, mental health difficulties, substance misuse or difficulties transitioning to adulthood.


Challenges Faced by Young People

There are some challenges that are unique to being young, however many that all age groups face. The difference for adolescents and young adults is that they may be facing these stressors for the first time. They may also not have had the opportunity yet to develop strong coping skills or positive social supports. Some of these challenges include:

* Academic stress of completing high-school exams

* Commencing tertiary and self-motivated study

* Entering the workforce for the first time

* Adjusting to the discipline and demands of work life

* Stressors in dealing with workplace relationships

* Coping with office politics and unequal power relationships

* Living independently for the first time

* Facing difficulties with share housing

* Changing relationships with family members as becoming a youth adult

* Family conflict, breakdown and divorce

* Loss of friendships as peoples lives go in different directions

* Social isolation and loneliness post school

* The death of loved ones or friends

* The breakdown of the first serious romantic relationship

* Living with a partner for the first time

* Sexuality, gender and/or general identity issues – who am I?

* Unplanned pregnancies or becoming a parent for the first time

* Financial responsibilities for the first time

* Physical health issues or injury

* Suicidal thoughts or self-harm

* The development of mental health issues such as anxiety or depression

* Problems with alcohol or illicit substance use and peer pressure

* Getting into trouble with the law


Problems That Can Develop in Adolescence

While there are many great things about being young, such as higher energy levels and greater opportunities for adventure, young people are at greater risk of certain social, mental or physical health issues than adults. These include:

* Self-image and self-esteem issues

* Alcohol misuse or addiction

* Illicit substance misuse or dependence

* Anxiety and depression or other mood disorders

* Eating disorders or weight issues

* A psychotic or manic episode

* Risk-taking behaviours

* Car or other accidents

* Suicidal behaviour and attempts

* Sexual assaults or abuse

* Domestic violence

* Bullying and/or low social supports

* Unemployment and homelessness

Counselling can be a positive way to getting extra support to navigate through the many stressors that present in the teenage and young adult years. It can reduce the risk of any negative outcomes and assist the individual to transition into adulthood successfully.

If you would like to learn more about adolescents and young adults or to make an appointment, please refer to the contact details below.