Adolescence is a very difficult stage of life. There are many rapid hormonal changes that are occurring during this time. This has the potential to affect one’s ability to think clearly, maintain consistent rationality, and most of all, manage emotions. The link between hormones and emotions is clear. Not only do the hormone changes affect emotions and behaviour, but the adolescent has not had the opportunity to develop maturity around how to handle hormonal changes. It is not surprising that adolescents display extreme emotions and unusual behaviours at times – it’s biological.
On top of this, adolescents have to navigate and manage extreme social pressures. We live in a rapidly changing world, where technology has developed significantly over the past two decades. Our brains do not evolve that quickly, though adolescents are expected to keep up. Another social pressure is peer interaction. We all have the need to affiliate with others. Who an adolescent associates with will have an impact on how they turn out as an adult. This need to assimilate with others often leads adolescents to utilising primal actions to ‘fit-in’, such as engaging in particular social interests, choosing a fad diet, or even using substances to prove themselves. These social interests are maintained by social media and immediate access to information.
All of this is going on at a time when an adolescent is expected to choose a career or study path, engage in extra-circular activities, and possibly maintain a part-time job.
An adolescents brain continues to develop until approximately 25 years of age. They are developing their personality everyday, and have a number of stressors and challenges due to our fast-pace and pressured lives. Cause Effect Psychology specialise in treating and supporting adolescents. If you would like to speak with one of our Psychologists, contact us today to make a confidential appointment.