Hormones are the chemical messengers in the human body responsible for maintaining the body’s homeostasis. During puberty, the hypothalamus produces gonadotropin, a hormone that instigates the production of sex, adrenal, and growth hormones. The spike in each of these hormones affects the teenager’s body, moods, emotions, and impulses.
Changes in behavior and temperament are normal in teens. However, hormonal imbalances can result in mental health disorders. Reach out to Stonewater Adolescent Recovery Center to learn the effects of hormones on teen mental health by calling 662.373.2828 today.
How Do Hormones Impact Teen Mental Health?
1. Increased Vulnerability to Mental Health Problems
Adolescents with unbalanced hormonal levels are more susceptible to mental health disorders. Hormonal imbalance, coupled with external stressors, can alter the brain’s functionality. It increases the stress hormone receptors while simultaneously lowering its relaxation hormone receptors. This can result in long-term anxiety problems in teens.
2. Sex Hormones Influence Mood and Behavior
The two main sex hormones in the human body are testosterone and estrogen, both of which spike during adolescence. Testosterone is the predominant hormone in males and estrogen in females. In females, estrogen levels influence the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter. Serotonin levels lower than the threshold can cause depression. On the other hand, low levels of testosterone or too high estrogen levels can cause irritability, a common sign of poor mental health.
Fluctuations in estrogen and testosterone levels can also result in the following:
- Brain fogginess
- Low self-esteem
- Social withdrawal
3. Adrenal Hormones Influence Teen Mental Health
It’s normal for adolescents to experience stress and mood swings from time to time. However, chronic stress can increase the production of cortisol, the stress hormone, which affects how the body copes with stress over the long-term. Stress also causes elevated adrenaline levels, which can result in adrenaline anxiety.
What Are the Common Causes of Hormonal Imbalance?
Hormonal imbalance occurs when there is too much or too little of a hormone in the bloodstream. Such imbalances, even when very slight, affect major bodily processes in a significant manner. The causes of hormonal imbalance vary from person to person, but the common contributors include:
- Poor nutrition and an unhealthy lifestyle
- Chronic stress
- Medical conditions such as diabetes and pituitary tumors
- Environmental factors
- Abuse of steroids
How Can Teens Maintain Hormonal Balance for Optimal Mental Health?
To ensure positive mental health, teens need to adopt strategies that optimize hormonal health.
- Regularly exercising can help your teen maintain hormonal balance. Staying active reduces stress levels and helps regulate testosterone, whose imbalance can result in a myriad of mental health problems like anxiety.
- The liver is responsible for metabolizing and regulating sex, adrenal, and thyroid hormones. An overburdened liver fails to do so effectively, resulting in high hormone levels in the bloodstream. To keep the liver at optimal working conditions, observe a healthy diet, and avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates.
- Learn to effectively manage stress by using techniques such as meditation, yoga, Pilates, mindful breathing, and listening to soothing music. Also, ensure that you’re getting enough sleep. Better sleep boosts mental and hormonal health as your body releases several crucial hormones during sleep. Lack of enough sleep, therefore, inhibits this process and can adversely affect teen mental health.
Learn More At Stonewater Adolescent Recovery Center
At Stonewater Adolescent Recovery Center, we utilize progressive, evidence-based programs. We use these programs to effectively treat mental health disorders in adolescent boys that arise from unbalanced hormones. Our mental health treatment programs include:
- Anxiety treatment program
- Depression treatment program
- Bipolar treatment program
- Trauma treatment program
Hormonal imbalance symptoms can mimic signs of mental health disorders like depression and anxiety. Contact Stonewater Adolescent Recovery Center today at 662.373.2828 to learn how hormones impact teen mental health and get an accurate diagnosis.