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Teen Treatment Programs Helping Teens Struggling with Grief

Residential Treatment Center Helping Teens Struggling With Grief


How Does Solstice East Help Teens Cope With Grief?

At Solstice East, we believe that healing comes from a mind and body therapeutic approach. We view treatment in a holistic method, and aim to gain trust and build relationships with our patients. 

Teenagers who are dealing with grief can easily spiral down a destructive path. At Solstice East, “we help teens struggling with grief who may lost opportunities, relationships, friendships, and loved ones. When grief runs free with an uncontrollable force, it can become an issue.” Uncontrolled grief can turn into destructive and depressive behaviors.

We have the opportunity to treat teenagers dealing with grief with a variety of therapeutic approaches. From group, to individual, equine therapy, and more, we will procure suitable therapy methods for your teenager. Our holistic approach also includes proper nutrition classes, physical fitness, and mindfulness meditation. When mind and body are connected, it allows for the teenager to successfully heal and move forward in life.

What are the Causes of Teenage Grief?

Numerous types of loss and abandonment can cause teenage grief. However, the most common is the loss of a parent or close caretaker. The loss of a parent can cause teenagers to have traumatic affects long after the event takes place. 

Grief reactions abate over time for most children bereaved by sudden parental death; however, a subset show increased or prolonged grief reactions, which in turn increases the risk for functional impairment and depression. If an adolescent doesn’t properly cope with grief, it leads to destructive and impairing results later in life.

It is not only the death of a parent that causes grief in teenagers, it is also: death of a friend, death of a friend/relative by suicide, a violent death, multiple deaths, accidental death, death by chronic illness, and being a witness to a death. All of these types of loss can be damaging or disorienting.

Individuals who have a history of difficult early relationships and lose a person with whom they had a deeply satisfying relationship seem to be at risk. There appears to be a correlation between prior stress, anxiety, and mood disorders that can greatly affect a teenager who experiences a traumatic event. Unequipped with the proper tools to manage with grief, the teenager will turn to destructive behaviors as a coping mechanism.

Getting help for your struggling teen before symptoms get worse

If you fear that your daughter is going down the wrong path in life due to the emotional and behavioral challenges they are struggling with, it may be best to get help now before their situation becomes even worse. Solstice East helps steer young women down a happier, brighter path in life. With college-preparatory academics and individualized therapeutic programming, we help change lives and help teens and families plan for a successful future. 

Solstice East helps teens through:

  • Gender-specific programming: At Solstice East, we have designed our culture and programming around a girl-only approach. Everything from our equine therapy programming to the clinical specialization of our therapists is specifically geared towards addressing the complex needs of teen girls.
  • Family centered approach: The most important relationship in your daughter’s life is the one she has with her family. Solstice East has an intensive family therapy focus which includes weekly family therapy sessions, quarterly family seminars, and multi-family groups. Lasting change can only occur if the entire family is on board in the therapeutic process.
  • Relationship-focused programming: One of the highest contributing factors to the overall success of a student during their time at Solstice East is the relationships they develop with therapeutic staff and their peers on campus. These relationships help provide a safe, comforting environment for teens to embark on their healing journey. Learn more about relationship therapy here>>>
  • Equine therapy: Students take part in equine therapy on a regular basis. Working with horses helps students build relationship and communication skills. Horses are extraordinarily social creatures who are very sensitive to an individual’s emotional state. Because of this, they help students regulate emotions. Learn more about equine therapy>>>

Treatments for Teenage Grief

At Solstice East, we offer a mix of mindfulness based cognitive therapy, journaling, psychiatric help, and other holistic methods of treatment. Building trust and a solid relationship is the first step in the healing process. 

Mindfulness based cognitive therapy allows a teen to become aware of their inner feelings, and outside surroundings. It gives them the ability to effectively work through issues instead of being bombarded and overwhelmed by them.

Mindfulness permits the teenager to see and explore her feelings of grief, instead of avoiding her thoughts. We believe in taking gradual steps to improve and to help a teenager learn the proper tools to cope with grief.

Having a safe and positive environment for the teenager to express her feelings through physical fitness, journaling, meditation, various therapy methods, and creative writing/crafts, will allow her to:

  • properly talk about death
  • mourn the loss
  • address ambivalent feelings
  • preserve positive memories
  • redefine the relationship
  • commit to other relationships.

Symptoms & Signs of Teenage Grief

Symptoms of Teenage Grief include:

Post-Traumatic Stress
Uncontrollable Moods
Substance abuse
Low self-esteem
Trouble maintaining friendships
Poor academic performance
Lack of interest in activities
Struggling with everyday tasks
Cognitive impairment
Sleep disturbance
Hyper vigilance

Why Should Parents Choose Residential Programming For Grief in Teens?

Sending a child away to a residential program can have powerful benefits for the child and the family. 

Sending your child away from home to receive treatment:

  • Ensures the immediate safety of the child and family at home.
  • Removes the immediacy of communication- “knee jerk” responses to anger or frustration are eliminated while the child can learn new, healthy ways to deal with their emotions.
  • Removes child’s current stressors, peer group, and temptations.
  • Serves as a total reset for the family.  Communication can resume slowly.
  • Ensures the child is focused on the therapy and peer group of the facility, not in attempts to get their friends to “rescue” them from local treatment.
  • Improves accuracy of assessment. Outpatient treatment relies on the child accurately recounting events, feelings, and behaviors sometimes days after, whereas at inpatient program assessment is in real-time.
  • Ensures the confidentiality of the child.  At a local facility, the child will likely encounter peers or even form relationships with individuals that could potentially continue after treatment.

Resources for State Families Seeking Help

Psychology Today A well-known psychology magazine, Psychology Today has been in print for half a century. The website builds on what made the magazine famous namely, a timely response to issues in the media, fun articles, and a high level of professionalism that makes even highly scientific material easy to grasp for a casual reader.
HELPGUIDE.ORG A collaboration between Harvard Medical School and Helpguide.org helps bring vital information to parents and children of any age. From recognizing the warning signs of mental illness to helping parents see dangerous behaviors in their children, Helpguide.org contains a multitude of easy-to-read pages outlining both the symptoms and the suggested course of action.

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