Child & Adolescent Related Content

Understanding Anxiety in Kids and Teens

As a parent, teacher, babysitter, or even neighbor, you may notice behavior that concerns you. Though you may not be able to immediately identify it, you know something is not right. Anxiety in children can show up in different ways, such as avoidance of activities or experiences, irritability, and...

Just How Does Drinking Affect the Teenage Brain?

Studies at McLean Hospital and elsewhere have shown that alcohol affects the brains of adolescents in profound and dangerous ways. During the teenage and early adult years, the brain is still developing, making it more vulnerable to alcohol than the adult brain. Moreover, research indicates that the...

Everything You Need To Know About Teen Use of Drugs & Alcohol

Growing up can be difficult. Oftentimes, adolescents are curious, stressed, emotional, and looking for ways to escape boredom. Adolescents are also more likely to experiment with substances due to the way the brain develops. Sometimes, when given the opportunity, they’ll find an escape through drugs...

Early Mental Health Intervention Can Lead to Lifelong Success

Did you know that 50% of all lifetime cases of mental illness begin by age 14? Statistics like this make McLean Hospital clinicians, like Dana B. Sarvey, MD, want to spend every possible minute educating parents, pediatricians, and other adults who care for children about the importance of mental...

Everything You Need To Know About OCD in Kids and Teens

While working on a project together, you see a friend packing up their work supplies in a very neat fashion. You can’t help but point out that they’ve organized all their pens to be lined up in order of color and all facing the same direction in their box. “Oh,” they reply. “That’s just my OCD.”...

Students, Suicide, and What Parents Can Do

Most high school and college students struggle while trying to succeed in the classroom, fit in with their peers, and cope with all the highs and lows of growing up. Those stressors often lead to depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, those same stressors can lead to thoughts of suicide. Advice for...

What Teens Want to Know About Borderline Personality Disorder

Do emotions seem to overpower you and control many of your actions? Do you spend a lot of time worrying about social situations? Do you act without thinking in ways that get you into trouble? That might make you a typical teen. But if your behaviors are severe enough, you could have a mental health...

Is Parenting Stressing You Out? Try These Coping Strategies

Many people wish they could spend more time with their loved ones, but the COVID-19 crisis has pushed the concept of togetherness to new, often stressful, extremes. Just a few short months ago, many parents and caregivers were able to strike a healthy balance between their work lives and their home...

5 Tips to Help Teenagers Adjust to the “New Normal”

Teens face many age-group-specific challenges during the coronavirus pandemic. Adolescence is a stage when many people value time with peers and seek independence from parents. Now, the coronavirus has left teens isolated from friends and at home with their families 24/7. However, parents can...

Moms and Dads, You Aren’t Alone: COVID-19 Burnout Is Very Real

Although we do not have current research on how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting families, most parents will tell you that the impact is profound. In a span of just a few days, millions of families around the world found themselves cooped up together in houses and apartments with nowhere to go...

Dear Parents: You Aren’t Perfect & That’s Just Fine

Dear parents, you probably won’t have time to read this, thanks to COVID-19. Maybe that’s because you just got home from an essential job like delivering groceries after a long, underpaid shift. Or maybe you are working from home while also trying to homeschool your three young children. Or you...

4 Ways to Help Children Manage Emotions

Finding effective ways to help your child cope with big emotions while you’re home together has never been more important—or difficult! Here are some suggestions for what to do when your kids or teenagers express big feelings, like sadness, anger, and anxiety. 1. Validate, Validate, Validate Start...

How Mindfulness Helps Families Cope With Stress

Mindfulness means slowing down to notice what is happening in the present moment. All you need to do is focus on one thing right now and gently catch yourself when your brain creates judgments or distractions. Mindfulness can be helpful during times of uncertainty and stress. Regular mindfulness...

5 Tips for Teachers and Counselors Getting Started With Online Learning

Imagine last spring, sitting in your classroom or your office with your students. The idea of teaching your entire day online or helping a student who was on the other end of a webcam probably seemed like an April Fools’ Day meme you saw on Facebook. But virtual school is a reality right now. And...

What Is Teen Cutting and Self-Injury?

Public understanding of self-injury or “cutting” in adolescents has grown in recent years. Many studies and media reports have called attention to this teen mental health concern, resulting in less confusion and ignorance. Despite this progress, many misconceptions about self-injury remain. For...

Why Kids Need Recess at School

Whether jumping through sprinklers at city parks, chasing soccer balls at camp, or kayaking with family, the quintessential childhood summer is filled with physical activity. Fortunately, summer programming has often reflected that kids need to get outdoors, use their bodies, play, and socialize...

Staff Profile: Kerry Rivard, LMHC

Kerry Rivard, LMHC, has extensive clinical experience treating adults and adolescents who engage in self-harm and struggle with suicidal ideation. She has worked as a consultant and trainer for various Massachusetts Department of Mental Health programs in addition to her direct clinical work in...

Staff Profile: Arielle S. Gartenberg, PsyD

Arielle S. Gartenberg, PsyD, is a therapist specializing in dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for children, adolescents, and young adults with emotional dysregulation. She has experience in the treatment of borderline personality disorder, mood disorders...

Staff Profile: Hannah Lawrence, PhD

Hannah Lawrence, PhD, graduated with her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from the University of Maine, completing her internship at Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Her research examines the role of mental imagery in the etiology and treatment of mood disorders. She has a...

Staff Profile: Maggie Gorraiz, PhD

Maggie Gorraiz, PhD, is a child and adolescent psychologist and a DBT-Linehan certified DBT clinician. She has extensive experience in providing assessment and treatment of children and adolescents struggling with problems related to emotion dysregulation, including suicidal and self-harming...