The continuous rise in the numbers of depression among teenagers has left researchers scrambling for an answer. Most experts point the finger at technology. Growing living costs, barriers to higher education and a shaky economic outlook are high-level factors as well.
In general, a high number of teenagers do not have an optimistic view of the future. A 2019 survey revealed that 45% of teens are worried they won’t be able to afford to live on their own when they become adults, while 47% are concerned they will not be able to raise the fund they need to get through college.
The study also showed that 40% worry about finding well-paid work, and 33% are concerned they don’t know how to manage money. Remember, this was three years ago before the pandemic. In the aftermath of a crisis that was woefully mismanaged by world leaders, the outlook for teens and young adults is even worse.
Nature Walks Sedate Angry Teens
The stress of being a teenager is hard enough. During this stage in life, we are worried that we don’t fit in and that nobody likes us. On top of that, there are the challenges of keeping on top of studies and passing exams.
Stress is a contributing factor to anxiety and depression. It also leads to anger issues in teenagers that feel as though the world is against them. And right now, a lot of people feel as though the world is against them.
Extreme anger issues are thought to be a symptom of social and emotional disconnection – which is being fuelled by technology and social media toxicity in today’s teens. Young people are not learning the art of social interaction.
But researchers have discovered that nature walks can help to alleviate stress. And if teens engage in nature walks in groups, they have the opportunity to develop social skills as well.
Encouraging your teenage offspring to walk in nature is also an opportunity for family bonding. Parents need to spend quality time with their children to provide the emotional support that makes children and teenagers secure adults.
Emotional bonding at an age helps to nurture a sense of self-esteem and self-worth. Whilst a child’s formative years are the most important time to nurture emotional support, it is during the teenage years when a lack of emotional bonding begins to cause problems for teenagers. Insecure teenagers experience higher levels of stress because they do not feel a sense of belonging.
If you have difficulty persuading a moody teen to head for the hills, why not make your nature walks more engaging? There are plenty of fun and educational games you can develop to make your family nature walks more interesting.
Lifestyle decisions contribute to depression and anxiety so encouraging teens to adopt a healthy lifestyle like nature walks could be a step in the right direction to reduce the number of people suffering from anxiety and depression.