Adolescents and teens require therapy that is tailored to their age and stage in life.

We provide mental health services for several issues experienced by adolescents and teens. These issues include, but are not limited to:

  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorders
  • Body Focused Repetitive Behaviours
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder
  • Social Anxiety Disorder
  • Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia
  • Peer Issues and Bullying
  • Family Relational Issues
  • Emerging Identity Issues
  • Perfectionism
  • School Refusal
  • Phobias
  • Health Anxiety
  • Trauma
  • Depression
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • ADHD
  • Emotion regulation
Our Adolescent & Teen Mental Health Team

What are Adolescent and Teen Mental Health Services?

Adolescent mental health services are evidence-based treatments for teens and youth. At FTPS we ensure that services received are age appropriate. This means that our therapeutic language matches the age of the individuals. And the interventions are use are individualized to the teen we are working with.

We take a comprehensive approach when providing adolescent and teen mental health services for youth. Most often, parents will reach out to us and provide us with an overview of mental health services needed. We will then meet with the youth and often a parent for an initial session with the best fit therapist. If the parents and teen feel this is a good match, then therapy will proceed.

After that, we will continue sessions with the teen, focusing on their goals. During adolescent and teen mental health services, parents will join sessions in a manner determined by the teen and therapist. Parent education and coaching are important parts of the work we do with youth. Ultimately, the goal is for everyone to be working in a way that best supports the road to recovery. This may also include resources being provided for both parents and teens.

Who Provides Teen Mental Health Services at FTPS?

Adolescent and teen mental health services are provided by professionals from a variety of disciplines on our team. Professionals at FTPS who deliver teen mental health services include psychologists, social workers, parent coaches and advanced doctoral level psychology students.

Adolescent and teen mental health services are provided by clinicians who have training and experience with this age group at FTPS. Given this unique development stage, working with a therapist with this knowledge and training is essential.

We provide adolescent and teen mental health services using an evidence-based assessment approach. This allows adolescents and teens to better understand what is interfering in their lives. It is also important to collect any key developmental information from parents, as agreed upon by the teen engaging in therapy. From there, a collaborative treatment approach is created. Youth will work together with their therapist to achieve your treatment goals. 

We provide a variety of evidence-based treatments as part of our adolescents and teen mental health services at FTPS. All therapists practice Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) at FTPS. Our other evidence-based approaches include Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Motivational Interviewing (MI) and Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT). 

Adolescent and Teen Mental Health Services

What Types of Mental Health Services are Provided for Youth at FTPS?

Many adolescents and teens are seeking treatment for OCD and related disorders (e.g., hair pulling and skin picking). Many associates at FTPS are able to provide interventions that target these issues as part of our adolescent and teen mental health services. This type of therapy is one of the main interventions we offer as part of our adolescent and teen mental health services. Treatment for this includes Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), with an emphasis on Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) work.

During adolescent and teen mental health services for OCD, adolescents and teens will learn to face their fears and become comfortable with things that make them uncomfortable. This will involve learning how to decrease rituals and compulsions.

Youth will also learn to change their relationship to their intrusive thoughts during adolescent and teen mental health services for OCD. This can help an individual to do things that matter to them in life, even when they are experiencing anxiety and distress. Adolescent and teen mental health services also include a family component, as mentioned before.

During adolescent and teen mental health services for OCD, the involvement of family is very important. Parents learn how to coach their teen through exposure therapy work. Parents also learn language they can use to help motivate their teen and allow them to feel confident in pushing against any anxiety or distress they might be experiencing.

Our treatment approaches for adolescent and teen mental health services can help with issues other than OCD as well. For example, teens can learn valuable skills and tools to enable them to overcome anxiety and avoidance, challenge negative thoughts, enhance low mood, manage worries, incorporate everyday mindfulness and process traumatic experiences.

Adolescent and teen mental health services also involve providing support for individuals presenting with relational issues, academic issues, general life stressors and ongoing issues of self-exploration and emerging identity. 

Perfectionsim is another issue that many adolescents and teens struggle with. This can impact your academic career and ongoing relationships. Many of our clinicians who provide adolescent mental health services work with issues relating to perfectionism. CBT and ACT interventions are helpful approaches for teen perfectionism. 

In-between sessions, you will often engage in life practice. This will allow you the opportunity to try out skills in-between therapy sessions. These types of skills include: raising your present-moment awareness, shifting your unhelpful thinking styles,  guiding you to move towards what matters to you in life and embracing your values.

Exposure therapy is often a part of in-between session work as well. You will learn to face things you fear and decrease your avoidance. Overall, planning out things to work on in-between sessions is a very valuable component of therapy and can contribute to long-term gains. 

Does FTPS provide adolescent mental health services near me? We provide mental health services for youth throughout Ontario and BC! Our adolescent mental health services consist of both individual therapy approaches and groups. Contact us and find out more about what our team can offer you. 

Frequently Asked Questions

There are different ways to determine whether adolescent mental health services are needed. Changes in routines and personality might be indications. Adolescents might refuse to attend school, or their marks might change. A parent might also notice changes in appetite, sleep, and emotions. Mental services for youth could be beneficial for all these reasons. 

Some specific symptoms might warrant concern. For example, individuals experiencing symptoms of depression will experience a variety of symptoms, including low mood, loss of interest and pleasure in activities they usually enjoy, as well as changes in appetite and sleep, feelings of guilt and worthlessness, and thoughts of ending one’s life. 

OCD symptoms in teens often present in a similar manner to adults. They experience symptoms such as intrusive and unwanted thoughts (i.e., obsessions) and the need to engage in certain behaviours in response to these thoughts (i.e., compulsions).

When obsessions and compulsions take up a lot of time and lead to disrupted functioning, your teenager might want to speak with a healthcare professional. This would allow for a proper assessment. Your teenager might be experiencing symptoms meeting the diagnostic criteria for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. And you can speak to them about whether adolescent therapy for OCD would be a good course of action. 

In all these instances and more, adolescent mental health services might be a good match to help your teen feel better and regain their previous level of functioning. 

Of course, a teenager may or may not explicitly ask to engage with teen mental health services. More often, parents will notice symptoms warranting a discussion to pursue teen therapy. And parents might be wondering whether their teen meets the diagnostic criteria for a mental health disorder. In these instances, it is always good to seek a psychodiagnostic assessment by a healthcare professional. 

Looking for a psychologist near me for teens? FTPS has a team of mental health clinicians who provide adolescent mental health services. Our adolescent therapy focuses on individuals experiencing symptoms of OCD, depression, panic disorder, social anxiety, generalized anxiety, emotion regulation, and more.

Many different types of therapeutic approaches can be used in teen therapy. The types of teen mental health services chosen by a teen psychologist should be in collaboration with the adolescent and the family. It will also depend on the individual’s problem and the types of evidence-based treatment that exist for the mental health issues. 

For example, OCD symptoms are often best treated with teen CBT therapy, with an emphasis on ERP. Within this type of approach, adolescents will learn many important skills to manage their OCD symptoms. Some of these skills will include:

  • Connections between thoughts, emotions and behaviours
  • Understanding avoidance behaviours and the purpose of them
  • Learning how anxiety is not dangerous, just uncomfortable
  • Leaning into anxiety and facing our fears
  • Creating exposure hierarchies that allow one to understand how to approach activities that have been avoided
  • Planning out exposure therapy work
  • Learning different cognitive strategies – including thought record work and responsibility pie
  • Being provided with coached exposure therapy in session – virtually or in your community 
  • Teen CBT therapy provides effective care for individuals when they are younger. This can allow for long-term health and wellness

Teen counseling for low mood or depression might involve learning different skills. CBT for depression is another evidence-based treatment that draws on principles of CBT. Within this approach, teens will learn key skills to help manage low mood and engage in activation. Some of these skills will include:

  • Connections between thoughts, feelings and behaviour
  • The role of avoidance in keeping our mood low
  • The importance of following a plan and not your mood
  • Monitoring our moods and learning how they connect to our behaviours
  • Challenging automatic thoughts that are unhelpful in nature and contribute to low mood
  • Understanding how to balance our thinking and how this connects to changes in our moods and behaviours

Adolescent therapy involving the delivery of emotion regulation skills might be best approached with a different intervention, such as DBT skills. The types of skills that would be delivered with a DBT approach often focus on mindfulness, emotion regulation, distress tolerance and interpersonal effectiveness. 

Teen counseling might also incorporate Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. This is an evidence based intervention that helps adolescents learn skills such as present moment awareness, distancing ourselves from thoughts and different values-based interventions. ACT therapy techniques also incorporate metaphors and experiential exercises.

These interventions can allow teenagers to become more aware of their emotions, understand that they are more than what their thoughts are telling them and to focus on what matters to them – even in the face of difficult thoughts and emotions. Adolescent therapy employing ACT strategies may be used as a primary intervention for a variety of difficulties, including anxiety, depression, perfectionism and body focused repetitive behaviours (i.e., hair pulling and skin picking). 

When teens engage with adolescent mental health services, it is important for the therapist to be aware of these different interventions and what might be the best match for them. Speaking about one’s issues with a well-trained therapist is the first step. Following that, adolescents and their therapist can engage in collaborative treatment planning and decide on goals for therapy.

Overall, teen CBT therapy is highly effective. Research exists on the benefits of engaging in adolescent therapy that uses principles of CBT and ERP-based interventions for mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety and OCD. ACT therapy skills and DBT skills are also effective interventions to use in teen therapy. These skills can be used as a primary intervention or integrating them into other interventions, such as teen CBT therapy.

You might wonder how would a therapist decide what interventions to use in teen therapy? It is based on different aspects of the clinical picture. Your therapist will listen to your teen’s presenting issues, types of treatments tried in the past and will discuss what feels like a good fit.

Do you need a psychologist for teens near me? Does FTPS have a therapist near me for teens? We have a team of mental health clinicians that are available to work with you and your teen!

It can be very difficult for a teenager to deal with mental and emotional distress. They might not have the right coping tools or strategies on their own. If a parent notices this distress, it can be helpful to open up a meaningful dialogue about it. Of course, it can feel daunting to approach a teen regarding changes in mood and routines.

How can a parent best suggest teen therapy for their loved one? It can be very difficult for anyone to cope with and express mental and emotional distress. And it is possible that your teenager might feel uncomfortable sharing this distress. However, there are behaviours you might notice before deciding to approach your teen. 

For example, you might notice that your teenager is having difficulty studying and completing their homework. They might also stop socializing with their friends in the way they used to. You might notice their marks begin to decline. Perhaps a teacher reaches out to you and notices dramatic changes in their behaviour. These are all signs that it might be time to approach your teen with your concerns.

Of course we would want to approach them in an open manner and with warmth and curiosity. You might start off by stating your concern and that you have noticed changes in their behaviour. You can let them know what you are seeing in them day to day. You can also let them know that you are there to support them. And you can find someone who they can talk to about things that might be uncomfortable. This might open the door for them to want to find help. It can be difficult to engage in teen CBT therapy.

Changes in one’s mental health is not always obvious to the person. However, starting a dialogue with that person will allow them to hear your concerns. Then you might be able to plan together for next steps. They will know that you want what is best for their mental health. You can also look for potential teen mental health services that might appeal to them. If they seem interested, you can then suggest some helpful resources.

Interested in counseling near me for youth? You can reach out to us at FTPS and we can discuss all the different options we have for youth and teenagers experiencing mental health issues.

This is a question we are often asked at FTPS! Teens and adolescents do not always want to enter into teen therapy. However, it is very important for the individual who is in need of a mental health service to be motivated to do so. Adolescent therapy can be daunting to start for many individuals. Ensuring there is a good fit between therapist and client is essential. 

Looking for a therapist for teens near me that would be a good fit? We do many things at FTPS to ensure the best fit. The process starts with a call with our intake team. This allows us to best understand the presenting concerns of the individual seeking teen therapy.  We often encourage both the parent and teen to attend the intake call, if possible. Following this process, our team discusses the best match therapist for your teen.

You are able to review a therapist profile and attend a no charge meet and greet with that therapist. Then you can meet with a clinician who engages in teen counseling and learn more about their approach to adolescent therapy. It is very important for your teenager to be present at the meet and greet. This will give them a good sense of whether they feel comfortable with their new potential therapist. This is an important first step in starting teen CBT therapy or any other type of mental health service.  

At FTPS, we also offer group teen therapy for OCD. This can be a wonderful way for youth to connect with other peers who have experienced similar symptoms. By meeting others with lived experience, individuals often feel less alone and gain support and insight from others.

Group teen therapy can help people in their recovery. It can allow people to feel more motivated to engage in therapeutic skills. And it can allow people to feel brave enough to face things they have been avoiding. This can be important when OCD symptoms in teens are the focus of adolescent therapy. Group therapy offers a number of advantages for youth and teens. Does FTPS offer adolescent mental health services near me? Reach out to us at FTPS to learn more!

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