Reaching Out For Help – Where Can I Find Teen Counseling Near Me?

By BetterHelp Editorial Team|Updated August 31, 2022

Being a teen can be tough. Adolescence is an important, eventful time in a person’s life, when they truly start discovering who they are and what they want to be. Teenagers are just as susceptible to mental health issues as the rest of society, and finding a therapist can help them navigate this time.

Additionally, when a teenager is going through a tough time, no matter the cause, they are more likely to shut themselves off from others than to reach out for help. However, ignoring or hiding problems rarely works out well. Whether the teen is struggling with the teen's school, peer pressure, body image, academic anxiety, or an underlying medical or psychological issue, they can find help from a confidential, judgment-free ally like an online therapist.

How Do I Know If I Need Counseling? Isn't What I'm Going Through Normal?

Teen Counseling: Benefits And Resources

If you are a troubled teenager or know a teenager who is going through a tumultuous time in life, then you should know that counseling is readily available. You may ask yourself, "Where can I find teen counseling near me?" or "Where can I find a teen therapist near me?" Fortunately, many teen counseling opportunities are available with qualified mental health professionals. Whether you are looking for in-person counseling or online counseling, you can find the right help from a teen therapist or mental health professional to get through the difficult times that adolescence can bring on.

Counseling is more important than many people realize. A teen therapist is more than just a mental health professional who evaluates a situation and takes notes. A licensed mental health professional like a teen therapist can be a non-judgmental listener, an expert adviser, a trusted teacher, and a supportive cheerleader all in one.

Coping With Mental Health Struggles

Learning to cope with teen mental health struggles is not easy for anybody. In fact, many people experience depression or anxiety through symptoms that can feel oppressive and draining, if not downright debilitating. A mental illness or disorder can make you question things you used to consider normal, and it might even cause you to lose interest in activities you once enjoyed.

This struggle can be especially real for teenagers, who have been conditioned to believe that these are supposed to be the most carefree, fun years of their lives. If depression or anxiety makes you feel unable to “make the most of” your teenage years, especially when your peers seem to be perfectly content, then these problematic feelings may be compounded.

The teenage years are also a period of significant physical changes. As your body looks and feels different than it used to, you might experience greater feelings of insecurity. For some teenagers, concerns about body image can develop into more significant issues if they aren’t addressed. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, an estimated 2.7 percent of teenagers in the United States develop an eating disorder—anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, or binge eating disorder—during adolescence. Eating disorders can have significant long-term impacts upon physical and mental health, so if you or a teenager you know is experiencing disordered eating or may have an eating disorder, seeking help from a mental health professional is very important.

Sexuality And Gender Identity

Another challenge for many teenagers is coming to terms with their maturing sexuality, particularly for teens who belong to the LGBTQ+ community. According to The Trevor Project, LGBTQ+ youth are more likely to experience a number of potentially traumatic incidents during adolescence, including discrimination and harassment, forced attempts at conversion therapy or other “treatments,” and suicidal thoughts or actions. If you or a teenager you know is experiencing thoughts of self-harm or suicide, seeking emergency medical care is critical. If you need emergency medical attention, call 911 immediately. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. This lifeline is available 24 hours a day.

No matter the cause, mental health difficulties can feel like they’re taking a big toll on your social life, and you might feel isolated or lonely. You might wonder if you will ever find your place in life or feel like you belong. As hard as it might be to believe sometimes, though, you are not alone in these struggles. Many teenagers are experiencing feelings similar to yours. These feelings are natural, especially during adolescence, but that does not necessarily make them any easier to process.

One thing that can be effective at helping teens with anxiety or otherwise process those feelings is counseling with clinical child or adolescent mental health professionals. A counselor can work with you to unpack your feelings of depression or anxiety, even intense feelings, in order to manage them and feel more in control of your life. Furthermore, you can work through underlying issues, such as developing your self-esteem and positive self-image, in order to alleviate anxiety and depression symptoms in the long run. A counselor will give you all the time you need to discuss what is going on in your life, as well as provide useful, practical advice. If you feel uncomfortable at first, that is completely normal. Therapists work with you to create a an environment where you feel you are sharing with friends and not mental health professionals. 

What therapy works best for teenagers?

The most common form of therapy mental health professionals use to help teenagers today is CBT. With the work of a teen therapist, it helps teenagers adjust their thought patterns and behaviors. By examining negative thoughts and unwanted behaviors, a teen therapist uses CBT to help teens live a life they're proud of.

Dealing With The Pressures Of Youth

Sometimes the pressures of your age can feel crushing. For example, you may think that all your friends are reaching certain thresholds or goals—first significant other, first kiss, driver’s license, being chosen as a team captain, receiving a scholarship—faster or sooner than you. This can lead to feelings of inadequacy, even though everyone achieves goals at their own pace and in their own time. It is normal to want to grow and to see yourself reach new milestones in life. Just keep in mind that life is not a race; taking time to take care of your own mental health will help you to enjoy those milestones more fully when you reach them.

Sometimes you need to take a step back to evaluate things in your life. If you are having a hard time coping with your emotions, your goals, your peers, or your obligations in life, then counseling can help. Whether you are feeling disappointed about an unrequited crush or dreading a college entrance exam, a licensed counselor will be there in your time of need to help you regain perspective. Don't be afraid to reach out to mental health professionals when your emotional burdens are feeling heavy.

Simply Having An Ally Helps

How Do I Know If I Need Counseling? Isn't What I'm Going Through Normal?

It is also important to understand that simply having a trusted friend helps when dealing with mental health issues. Sometimes mental health problems can make a teenager feel isolated. If you or your teenager feels cut off from the world due to mental health concerns, then finding an ally like a teen therapist can make all the difference.

You are never alone when you have a skilled mental health professional on your side. A teen therapist is going to be ready to address all the problems that you are going through while also simply being available to listen like a good friend. These mental health professionals can look out for you and help you get through a tougher chapter of life.

It may not always feel easy to reach out to a counselor at first, but once you do so, it can help out immensely. If you feel like your life is difficult and you need someone to talk to, then a counselor to offer you guidance, support, and encouragement can make it easier.

Online Counseling As A Resource

Whatever struggle you or a teen you care about may be experiencing, please know that you are not alone and there is effective treatment out there. The CDC reports that among children aged 3 to 17 in the United States, 7.4 percent have a diagnosed behavior problem, 7.1 percent have diagnosed anxiety, and 3.2 percent have diagnosed depression. This means that no matter what you are experiencing, literally millions of other people have come through experiences similar to yours. You are not alone, and there is help available. The American Psychology Association has counseling resources for everyone. One approach that has made a big difference for teenagers and their loved ones in recent years is online counseling, available through services like BetterHelp and its sibling platform for ages 13 to 18,

Online counseling is flexible and accessible for teenagers as well as adults. Rather than having to take time out of your day to sit in a waiting room and then talk to an unfamiliar adult in their office, you can connect with a licensed, caring therapist anytime, in any format that is comfortable for you, from the privacy of your own home. You can work with a therapist via video chat, phone calls, emails, or even text messaging, which can be a game-changer for teenagers; The Trevor Project found that 76 percent of LGBTQ+ teenagers would be most likely to reach out via a text message or chat function in a time of crisis. Thanks to services like BetterHelp and, that kind of flexible support is now an option. Here are some reviews of BetterHelp counselors from users who have found help for themselves or for teenagers they care about.

"I reached out to BetterHelp to obtain counseling for my teenage daughter. She has only met with Kathy once so far but I've noticed a change in her demeanor after one session. She said Kathy was very easy to talk to and that she gave her some mental tools to try. I can't wait for my daughter to have another session with Kathy!"

"Nadja is an amazing therapist; she's very understanding and sympathetic to all my concerns and traumas. She has guided me to more content to review during the week to help me understand my feelings, traumas and relatable situations. I definitely recommend Nadja as a counselor especially for woman who feel they need woman to woman advice. I found her way of counseling was as nurturing as a mother’s advice."

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is teenage therapy called?

While there isn't a specific kind of teen therapy or counseling designated for teens, many kinds of therapy are beneficial to teenagers who are willing to ask for help. A specific psychotherapist or psychiatrist might specialize in adolescent issues and work close with teenagers.

How do I know if my teenager needs therapy?

While it can be hard to determine who needs therapy, anyone can benefit from therapy. Talk to your teenager about attending counseling sessions where they can discuss their problems and hopes, and learn how to live a life that makes them feel good. Psychotherapy and counseling services can benefit everyone, even if there's not a specific "problem" to target. Group therapy and family counseling are also popular methods of preserving individuals' wellbeing and relationships.

Is therapy good for a 13 year old?

Therapy can be helpful at all ages. A 13 year old might be eager to have an outside party to talk to about family life, school, friends, and feelings. Teen counseling can teach your child healthy coping skills for teens and make a positive impact on their life. In big cities, such as Los Angeles, there is a variety of information on each client practice, whether it be with couples or families. Clients in general go to therapy when they want to improve a relationship or improve themselves, regardless of age.

How can I help my mentally ill teenager?

Mental health treatment is important for anyone who needs it. Make sure your teen feels loved, accepted, and supported, and work with a doctor to create a treatment plan. This will likely start with talk therapy, and may include the possibility of medication or sessions with family members. 

How do we treat teenagers?

Being a teenager can be difficult in ways that only teenagers can understand. Teenagers deserve to be treated with kindness and respect, and supported by mental health professionals if necessary. Having a chance to talk about what they're experiencing and how they're feeling can be highly beneficial for teens. 

How do I get my teen to speak in therapy?

It's actually not your job to get your child to speak in therapy-that's the job of the therapist! You may find that your teen is more likely to speak if they have a session alone with a therapist. It's natural to want to be included in evert area of your teen's life, and to want to know everything they say. Finding a therapist that you can rely on will ensure that your teen gets the care they deserve, and you can feel comfortable knowing that your therapist will keep you apprised of important updates. You might even find that your teen is more open with you after attending their first session.

How much does therapy cost?

The cost of therapy depends on where you live, the therapists's qualifications, and coverage from insurance companies. It can vary widely, but online therapy (including video sessions) is generally a more affordable option. 

What are the signs of a troubled teenager?

It can be difficult to determine what is typical teenage behavior and what is the sign of a troubled teen. Even young adults who act out or seem to be in trouble constantly are doing their best. If you're worried about your teen, it might be a good idea to seek therapy. The help of a therapist can help your child process their emotions in healthy ways, and you might be surprised how much changes if you also give therapy a try.

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