Helping Struggling Teens
Triangle Ranch understands that parents want to send their child to a safe, monitored environment where their son receives personal care and individual therapies that help heal behavior or mental disorders–whether brought on by trauma, foster care, adoption, addiction, or family genetics.
While your teen boy enrolls in our school for troubled teens for counseling, treatment, and improving academic/life skills, Triangle also helps students struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder improve their mental and physical health.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Teens
“Many people will experience traumatic events in their lives, including children and teens. Some researchers estimate that as many as 40% of children and adolescents will experience at least one traumatic event in their lifetime. While most people are able to “bounce back” from the event after a few days, weeks, or months, others struggle to cope with the experience and the memory of the trauma. These people, including children and teens, can develop what is known as PTSD, or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.”
“Traumatic events often include physical violence, an accident, a natural disaster, war, or sexual abuse. Children or teens may have experienced these events themselves, or they may have witnessed them happen to someone else.”
Common PTSD Symptoms in Teens
- Avoiding situations that make them recall the traumatic event
- Experiencing nightmares or flashbacks about the trauma
- Playing in a way that repeats or recalls the trauma
- Acting impulsively or aggressively
- Feeling nervous or anxious frequently
- Experiencing emotional numbness
- Having trouble focusing at school
Here are some other examples of PTSD symptoms your teen boy may have experienced:
- Children under 6 may get upset if their parents are not close by, have trouble sleeping, or act out the trauma in their play.
- Children ages 7 to 11 may also act out the trauma through play, drawings, or stories. Some have nightmares or become more irritable or aggressive. They may also want to avoid school or have trouble with schoolwork or friends.
- Children ages 12 to 18 have symptoms more similar to adults: depression, anxiety, withdrawal, or reckless behavior like substance abuse or running away.
Treating PTSD in Teens
- Cognitive behavioral therapy – A trauma-focused CBT therapist helps the student identify and correct irrational or illogical thoughts they might have about the trauma itself or people and situations they encounter in everyday life. CBT also typically includes psychoeducation about relaxation and coping techniques for stress.
- Play therapy – This type of therapy can work especially well for younger teens who struggle to communicate their reactions to the trauma and understand what happened. Play therapists use art therapy, games, and other interventions to help your son process trauma and cope resiliently with life.
- Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing – EMDR is a technique that incorporates guided eye movement exercises while a child recalls the traumatic event and works through cognitions and emotional responses they have about it.
- Medication – There is no medication that “cures” PTSD, but sometimes antidepressants and anti-anxiety medication can help relieve symptoms in some children and teens while they are also seeing a therapist.
“PTSD can occur with other types of mental illness and lead to other issues with teens, including drugs, risky behaviors, and self-injury. . These issues may need to be addressed in treatment as well to protect your child and help them achieve a full recovery.”
Triangle Ranch Helps
Teens Going Through PTSD
Picture your boy helping round up one thousand cattle on horseback in America’s breathtaking Yellowstone Park region! Life struggles that impact pre-teens and teens in today’s culture disappear as boys unplug from devices and learn important life principles in a unique, transformational approach. With over 30 years of experience with boys (ages 10-17), Triangle Cross Ranch, LLC enlists mentors in our approach to instill principles of family and love as well as the “Cowboy Code of the West” – an honorable, manly approach to life that is still alive and well in Wyoming. This approach is based on our strong Catholic faith, and we accept families from all Christian traditions. We call this “Reality Counseling” and your son will never be the same. Our experienced, caring and committed staff provides strong academics as well as trade school education.
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