The Effects of Social Isolation in Teens
- Anxiety, panic disorders, depression, and suicide.
- Heart failure, with a 68% risk of hospitalization and a 57% risk of getting admitted to the hospital’s emergency department.
- Addiction to other vices such as alcohol, drinking, and smoking.
- Decrease of physical activity, leading to obesity or malnutrition.
- Increased risk of dementia to about 50%.
- Other heart diseases and stroke.
What Causes Teen Social Isolation?
- Domestic violence
- Teens who suffer from abusive households tend to avoid contact with anyone. They do not want to reveal their current situation or are afraid of being asked about what is happening. Sometimes, teens get threatened not to speak up.
- Death of a loved one
- Mourning varies from one person to another. Some people divert their attention to recreational activities, while others stay home for a long time. Losing close friends, colleagues, or family members can cause people to isolate themselves.
- Relationship breakups
- Not all teenage romantic relationships have a fairytale ending. The first breakup often hurts them the most, so most teens going through heartbreaks isolate themselves from friends and family.
- Mental health issues
- Social isolation and mental health concerns are often correlated. Isolation in teens may be caused by mental health issues like anxiety and depression.
- Physical disabilities
- People with disabilities often find it challenging to interact with other people. They might feel ashamed of their appearance or disability, fearing that other people will insult or make fun of them. Also, those with hearing impairments have difficulty communicating because not everyone can understand and use sign language.
- Social media use
- Social networking sites, such as Facebook or Instagram, foster communication between people worldwide. However, they can also affect one’s mental health. Cyberbullying is prevalent among teens using social media. It can also become a substitute for meaningful relationships, making people think that it is healthy always to use social media when communicating instead of socializing in person.
- Going to university or transferring schools
- Teens who transfer schools or move into university might feel like they don’t belong. It may take them weeks or months to adjust, so they often spend time alone or with few people.
- Losing a job or unemployment
- The shame of losing a job or financial difficulties can cause a person to self-isolate from their friends and family, fearing insults and discouragements.
- Substance use
- Teens who use substances such as marijuana, heroin, and cocaine, spend time away from most friends and family members. They know that their actions are inappropriate. They might not want to get forced into a teen drug rehab center, so they avoid getting noticed and reprimanded by parents.
Avoidant/Antisocial Personality Disorders vs. Social Anxiety Disorder
- Public speaking.
- Making eye contact.
- Talking to strangers.
- Dating or meeting new people.
- Attending parties.
- Initiating conversations.
- Using public restrooms.
- Getting interviewed.
- Attending classes for the first time or in a new school.
- Starting a new job.
What To Do When Your Teen is Socially Isolated?
No medications can cure social isolation tendencies among teens, so therapy is the best way to treat it. Qualified therapists and mental health professionals can diagnose a teen with social anxiety or teen avoidant personality disorder and prescribe the most effective and suitable treatment method. The clinical professionals at Key Healthcare offer several different programs for adolescents struggling with teen isolation. Our programs often combine individual teen therapy and teen group therapy which helps adolescents see their issues from different perspectives.