Teens Struggling with Trauma: Four Ways to Help

After a teen experiences a traumatic event nothing is ever the same. This event can alter their outlook on life, impact/change the way they interact with others, and impact their overall ability to function on a day-to-day basis.
Traumatic events are a wide range of things that can have a severe emotional/physical impact on your teenager. This could be a personal experience such as a car accident, physical assault, or witnessing a crime. Or it doesn’t have to be personal at all. It could be something such as upset from a local, national, or international event like mass shootings or natural disasters.
Teens typically rely on their friend group for support, whereas children rely heavily on family. It is important to know how your teen manages stress and practice healthy methods for helping them address their struggles.


The first step is communication. There is no ending to this step either. Your teen should always know that the line of communication is open between you and them. Creating a safe space at home can reassure your teen that it is okay to express their feelings. It is natural to want to make everything disappear for your child, but avoiding the topic will only increase their emotional build-up and anxieties about the situation.

Be Patient

Moodiness and sensitivity can be side effects of your teen dealing with difficult situations. Acknowledge this and cut them some slack. Sometimes a teen will become angry and resilient towards family or whomever they blame for the traumatic event. If you disagree with their viewpoint, that is OK, but adding fuel to the fire won’t help them recover. Giving your teen a space to express their emotions is important.

Help Give Perspective

Helping your teen gain perspective of the situation can help them regain inner peace. Identifying the cause and effect is very important. Helping them appreciate that the good outweighs the evil in the world is a great start. Providing them with real-world examples of positive things is a good idea to help make your case believable in their eyes.

Encourage an Action Plan  

If your teen was impacted by a local, national, or international event, help them find ways to make a difference in the areas affected by the event. Creating fundraisers, writing cards, and volunteering are all examples of ways your teen can get involved and make a difference. This can have a huge impact on the community and your teen’s recovery process.

Trails Carolina

Trails Carolina was designed to help guide adolescents ages 10-17 towards healing, positive self-awareness, and reunification of the family. The program’s adventure-based therapy provides students with a wilderness experience that they can learn from and transfer skills to the real world. Trails Carolina empowers and encourages your child to transition back to reality feeling more confident and prepared to practice healthy habits on a daily basis. Let us help your family.
Contact us at 800-975-7303.

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Trails saved my daughter’s life. Amanda is an amazing human and a brilliant therapist. I am so grateful to her, Science Steve, and the other wonderful people who could reach my daughter at a time when I could not.

Margot Lowman August 2022

Great life changing experience for our son. After becoming addicted to gaming during covid he was very depressed. At Trails he experienced the wilderness, Science Steve, learning survival skills and top notch therapy and support etc… I highly recommend! This gave our son and our family a renewed family bond full of love and excitement about his bright future.

Winnifred Wilson July 2022


Outstanding clinical work and superb staff! There’s a great culture at this company and it shows with how they engage with families/clients.

Kristin Brace June 2022


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