Two Thirds of Teens with Mental Health Issues Receive Counseling

According to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), around two thirds of teens who have mental health difficulties are receiving mental health services that don’t involve taking medications.

Dr. David Axelson, chief of psychiatry at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, who wasn’t involved with the new report, told Live Science, the findings show “the majority of kids do receive some kind of service, which is positive. However, it would be best if all youth with significant mental or behavioral health problems received nonmedication treatment appropriate for their condition.”

The reports looked at data from 2010 to 2012 that involved teens using mental health services that didn’t involve drugs (nonmedication services). These services included any treatment or counseling provided in the school, childcare center, clinic, home or other places, such as attending a school or special school program for students with emotional or behavioral difficulties.

About 6 percent of teens, ages 12 to 17, in the U.S. have mental health problems and the report found that 4 percent had received nonmedication services in the previous six months. In addition, the results found that boys are more likely to receive treatment than girls, with 75 percent of boys receiving counseling, compared to 65 percent of girls. Half of the teenagers who received counseling did so at school, 40 percent at a clinic, and 12 percent received the treatment at home.


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