• When to Seek Help for Pre-adolescents and Adolescents

    Consult with a social worker if you observe these symptoms over time:


    • Marked change in school performance.
    • Inability to cope with problems and daily activities.
    • Marked changes in sleeping and/or eating habits.
    • Frequent physical complaints.
    • Sexual acting out.
    • Depression shown by sustained, prolonged negative mood and attitude, often accompanied by poor appetite, difficulty sleeping, or thoughts of death.
    • Abuse of alcohol and/or drugs.
    • Intense fear of becoming obese with no relationship to actual body weight, purging food, or restricting eating.
    • Persistent nightmares.
    • Threats of self-harm or harm to others.
    • Self-injury or self-destructive behavior.
    • Frequent outbursts of anger and/or aggression.
    • Threats to run away.
    • Aggressive or non-aggressive consistent violation of others' rights; opposition to authority, truancy, thefts, or vandalism.
    • Strange thoughts, beliefs, feelings, or unusual behaviors.


    If problems persist over an extended period of time, and especially if others involved in the child's life are concerned, it may be helpful to consult with a child/adolescent specialist or other clinician trained to work with children.


    *Remember: The frequency, duration and severity are often the difference between normal and problem behaviors.