Treatment for Mood Disorders in Teens

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Every parent of a teenager encounters days when their child seems moody. However, sometimes a bigger problem is present than just typical teen angst or acting out. Mood disorders in teens impact the lives of many kids, often making them confused about why they feel the way they do. Zenith Behavioral Health provides a treatment program that helps identify what mood disorder is present and helps the young person begin to heal. We also treat any co-occurring addiction to drugs or alcohol so your child returns home with improved mental and physical health. 

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What Is a Mood Disorder?

Mood disorders are mental health disorders that impact a person’s emotions and moods. Someone experiencing one may initially assume they are simply feeling moodiness and can control how they feel if they try hard enough. They may also think when a specific stressful event clears up, they will feel fine again. In reality, a person cannot control their moods and needs to seek professional treatment. This includes therapy and, if necessary, medications that help even out their moods.

Although they can happen at any age, mood disorders in teens may present somewhat differently than they do in adults. Parents of adolescents who exhibit signs of a mood disorder may mistake them for part of being a teenager. While teens are often prone to mood swings and feeling emotions to an extreme, there is difference between that and having an actual mood disorder.

Types of Mood Disorders That Teens Deal With

More than one type of mood disorder can occur in teens, making it important that a qualified clinician perform an assessment to determine which one is present. The different types of mood disorders include:

  • Major depressive disorder (also known as depression)
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Dysthymia (also known as persistent depressive disorder)
  • Postpartum depression
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder
  • Health-related mood disorders, related to serious or chronic illnesses
  • Substance abuse related mood disorders, brought on by abusing drugs or alcohol

Signs & Symptoms of Mood Disorders in Teens

When a clinician performs an assessment for mood disorders in teenagers, they look for certain characteristics. The moods typically last two weeks or longer. Not every teenager exhibits the same signs and symptoms, but many of them prove quite common. These include:

  • Consistent sadness
  • Anxiety
  • Feeling depressed
  • Anger or aggressive thoughts or actions
  • Intense joy, bordering on mania
  • Often feeling bored or without motivation
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Loss of interest in hobbies and pastimes
  • Poor performance in school
  • Feelings of guilt or unworthiness
  • Changes in appetite and/or weight
  • Difficult sleeping or sleeping too much
  • Lethargy
  • Abusing drugs or alcohol

Treatment Programs for Teens With Mood Disorders

A quality treatment program for mood disorders in teens should be provided by experts in the field of mental illness who also understand the unique needs of an adolescent population. Young people receiving help for their mood disorders will have access to physicians and therapists who offer a multi-pronged approach to learning to manage their illness. This includes different kinds of therapy, including cognitive-behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy. Both of these types of therapy help many teenagers with diagnoses like depression and bipolar disorder. 

Teenagers often benefit from the use of FDA-approved medications to help them reduce or eliminate symptoms of a mood disorder. Some medications may only be needed in the short-term, while others work better when used over a longer period of time.

Benefits of Mood Disorder Treatment in Phoenix, Arizona

Treatment for mood disorders in teens offers several benefits that work both while the individual is in treatment and after they leave a program. A residential program for treating mood disorders helps by removing the young person from their daily lives and the distractions that come from it. The right facility can feel like home and allow them to focus on the work that comes with addressing a mood disorder. The progress the person makes in treatment allows them to function better when they return home.

Mood disorder treatment includes learning what situations and people may trigger symptoms of the disease. The individual learns how to predict possible moods and use healthy coping skills in relation to them. The young person also learns how to identify their emotions and communicate them effectively to their families, friends, and others. This promotes the ability to have healthier relationships and avoid toxic behavior.

Moods can be greatly impacted by a poor diet and a lack of exercise. A teenager relying on junk food and glued to their screens finds it much harder to overcome a mood disorder. Another benefit of mood disorder treatment involves learning to eat a healthy diet and engage in physical activity.

Last, if the person also abuses drugs or alcohol, many treatment programs can help treat this at the same time as the mood disorder. When the person improves in one area, it often elevates their ability to get healthier in the other area, too.

Begin Treatment for Mood Disorders in Teens at Zenith Behavioral Health

Do you have a teen son aged 13 to 17 who developed a mood disorder and you aren’t sure where to turn? Parents want the best care possible for their children, and we built our program with this in mind. Zenith Behavioral Health in Phoenix has a specialized program that treats mood disorders in teens using techniques that are effective with adolescents. Our residential program helps boys fully understand their mood disorder and how to manage its symptoms. They return home prepared to enjoy improved mental health.

For more information about our program, visit our admissions page now. We can answer your questions about how our program works and get your son started on the path to healing today.

We Have a Seamless Admissions Process

If you or your loved one are ready to receive help, visit our admissions page to learn about the intake process here at Zenith Behavioral Health. Our team is ready and waiting to help you begin your recovery and take advantage of what life has to offer.