Speaking of HealthAromatherapy use and safety: What to know about essential oils during pregnancyMarch 01, 2024
Speaking of HealthCalcium intake and absorption: Are you getting enough?February 29, 2024
Speaking of HealthConsider T.I.M.E. when dealing with sepsisFebruary 28, 2024
It's not uncommon for teens to experience mental health issues like anxiety. It's believed that 1 in 5 young people experiences some type of mental health issue during the teen years. For LGBTQ youth, the statistics are alarming. A recent national survey showed 41% expressed serious suicidal ideation.
Marcie Billings, M.D., a Mayo Clinic pediatrician, says these kids need support. It can be as simple as listening.
If the teen in your life identifies as LGBTQ and decides to share that information, Dr. Billings asks parents to lend an ear as an important first step.
She says supporting children is critical.
LGBTQ youth with high levels of support from family had less than half the rate of suicide attempts, compared to youth who felt low to moderate support, according to the survey.
"Even if it's something that you're not sure of what to do, just be that listening ear, extending your love and support," says Dr. Billings.
Don't worry about getting it perfect. And you don't have to do it alone.
"We have a lot of avenues into different resources, whether that be mental health care providers, medical providers — in terms of whatever the needs are for that population of kids," says Dr. Billings.
Read more about how to help children:
- 5 ways to help teens overcome suicidal thoughts
- Social media risks: Tip to keep your children safe
- 5 things you need to know about mental health and girls
By Mayo Clinic Health System staff