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Adolescents

THIRA Health / Adolescents

Maintaining A Balanced Fitness Program in 2018

By Dr. Mehri Moore, M.D. We’d like to take a brief moment to discuss the at-times aggressive, counter-productive resolutions that so often accompany the New Year (“new year, new me”) which can cause feelings of anxiety and depression. Instead of feeling pressure to hit the gym, we here at THIRA Health encourage you to focus on holistic self-care in your quest to get healthy ––and considering that 80 percent of Americans with a gym membership don’t use it––the importance of a balanced and sustainable approach to fitness becomes more clear. Here are some simple ideas for promoting a new year of personal wellness: Benefits of Outdoor Exercise Fresh air has been shown to improve blood pressure, heart rate, and strengthen the immune and digestive systems. A balanced exercise routine...

Challenging the “New Year, New You” Message

By Dr. Mehri Moore, M.D. Around this time of year, it’s nearly impossible to escape messaging relating to revitalization or renewal. Gyms are offering discounted memberships, talk show hosts are discussing how to craft the perfect set of New Year’s resolutions, and media outlets of every stripe are running “Best of 20__” or “Year in Review” segments — and telling you what to look forward to in the coming year — on a nightly basis. It’s hardly a mystery why people get swept up in this “new year, new you” thinking, but it’s worth pausing for a moment to consider whether this approach to a fresh calendrical cycle is the right one. Celebrations of Renewal across Cultures This way of thinking is neither new nor, in a broad...

Adolescent Anxiety in the Social Media Age (Part II)

By Dr. Mehri Moore, M.D. As we covered in Part I of this article, numerous scientific studies have demonstrated the concerning connection between adolescent anxiety, depression, and suicide and excessive smartphone and social media use. According to research conducted by San Diego State University professor of psychology Jean Twenge, for instance, adolescents who use social media every day are 13% more likely to report frequent depressive symptoms than those who use social media more sparingly. The proliferation of social media has not been without detrimental effects on young men, but data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that young women have had an even tougher time adjusting. While suicide deaths among 15- to 19-year-old males increased by 31% from 2007 to 2015, they more...

Adolescent Anxiety in the Social Media Age (Part I)

By Dr. Mehri Moore, M.D. According to research conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health, roughly a quarter of 13- to 18-year-olds struggle with some sort of anxiety disorder during their adolescence. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests that many of these episodes are quite serious, as suicide deaths among Americans aged 10 to 19 have risen dramatically in the last decade. This troubling trend is particularly pronounced among adolescent girls, for whom suicide rates are at a 40-year high. Understandably, the question on everyone’s mind is, “Why?” Ever-increasing workloads and expectations at school and ongoing familial after-effects of the Great Recession have been put forward as possible explanations, but one of the most suspect culprits is the proliferation – and improper...

Understanding ‘Back to School’ and Adolescent Anxiety

By Dr. Mehri Moore This article was originally published in PsychCentral's Mental Health Library. As summer winds down and returning to school becomes an unavoidable reality, many teenagers are experiencing a rush of varied emotions. Some teens enjoy school and are eager to trade their dull summer jobs for daily intellectual enrichment. Others find school intolerable and wish that the steamy summer months would carry on forever. A third set sees the first day of school as a landmark of dread and anxiety and spend most of August worrying about whether they’ll get along with their new teachers, whether they’ll be able to keep their grades up, and whether they’ll be able to continue navigating the at times treacherous waters of adolescent sociality. When Butterflies Turn into Something...