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Is anxiety harmful for teens?

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Anxiety is a normal reaction to stress. Things like tests, meeting new people, speaking in public, going on a date, and competing in sports can make you feel wary or uneasy.

Anxiety can be a good thing when it helps you deal with a tense situation. For example, when you're studying for a test, a little anxiety can make you want to study hard so you do well. But it can be harmful when it's excessive and irrational and prevents you from being able to focus.

About 13% of teenagers have high enough anxiety to need medication or psychotherapy.

From: Anxiety and Teens WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES: Anxiety Disorders Association of America: "Anxiety Disorders in Children and Teens" and "Anxiety Medications and Kids." National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy."  MD Consult, Patient education handout: "Anxiety Due to a Medical Condition."  Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration: "Children and adolescents with anxiety disorders."  National Institute of Mental Health: "Anxiety Disorders."




Reviewed by Renee A. Alli on July 08, 2018

SOURCES: Anxiety Disorders Association of America: "Anxiety Disorders in Children and Teens" and "Anxiety Medications and Kids." National Alliance on Mental Illness: "Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy."  MD Consult, Patient education handout: "Anxiety Due to a Medical Condition."  Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration: "Children and adolescents with anxiety disorders."  National Institute of Mental Health: "Anxiety Disorders."




Reviewed by Renee A. Alli on July 08, 2018

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What are signs of anxiety in teens?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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