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At Risk Teen?
At Risk Teen? Most parents don't think their teen could be at risk for destructive or delinquent behavior, but at risk youth are everywhere. There are many at risk teen risk factors. Learn the signs so you can intervene in time to help at risk teens.
Parents often worry that their teens may be at risk for dangerous behaviors, but they usually hope that it won't happen to their teen. There are many risky or destructive behaviors that teens can engage in that make them at risk teens, including:
In fact, studies have found that teens who are at risk for one type of delinquent behavior are often at risk teens in others areas as well. Though it's concerning that teens often engage in multiple delinquent behaviors, this also means that getting help for an at risk teen involved in one risky behavior may help prevent others.
There are several risk factors that may mean one is an at risk teen. Though not all teens with these risk factors will get involved in negative behaviors, and some teens without these risk factors will still engage in risky behavior, teens with these risk factors may need early at risk teen intervention:
Parents of at risk teens may notice behaviors that worry them, such as:
Parents should talk to their at risk teens about any concerning behavior, which may indicate that teens are in trouble, and they should seek help from a doctor, counselor or other professional for at risk teens with unusual or dangerous behaviors.
There are also protective factors, or things that can help reduce the chances that at risk teens will become delinquent. Though many of the risk factors may be outside of a parent's control, they can help their teens with these protective factors:
Most communities and many religious organizations offer help for parents of at risk teens, such as free or low cost counseling, tutoring or mentoring programs, and classes for parents and families to help teens deal with their risk factors and avoid delinquent behavior. The earlier parents get help for at risk teens, they more likely they are to prevent serious problems in the teens' lives.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Injury Prevention and Control: Violence Prevention, "Youth Violence: Risk and Protective Factors" [online]
U.S. Department of Justice, Child Delinquency Bulletin Series, "Risk and Protective Factors of Child Delinquency" [online]
National Institute of Mental Health, Science Update, "Re-shaping Negative Thoughts Shields At-Risk Teens from Depression" [online]
U.S. National Library of Medicine, MedlinePlus, "Teen Violence" and "Drug Signs and Teenagers" [online]
Related Article: Out of Control Teen? >>