Teen Academic Issues

Generally speaking, one of the greatest responsibilities and sources of stress in teens’ lives is academic issues. In cases where teens are struggling in school, they can experience chronic stress which can aggravate symptoms which are already present, related to a teen mental health or teen substance abuse disorder. In a nutshell, when teens are struggling in school, it often spills over into multiple areas of their lives, and the feelings of self-doubt, frustration, and failure can be very harmful. At Paradigm San Francisco, we’ve designed a Teen Academic Issues program, to ensure teens are supported in this context, as well as all aspects of their lives.

Teen Academic Issues | Paradigm San Francisco


It’s important to recognize that teens struggling with school doesn’t necessarily mean getting poor grades, but can also include teens that excel in honors courses and are always at the top of the class, but who feel overwhelming pressure and stress to maintain that kind of academic performance. It’s also worth noting that all teens experience some stress related to academics, but for some teens, this stress becomes so intense that it creates negative effects in multiple areas of the teens’ lives. Some of the symptoms this kind of academic stress can cause includes things such as:

  • extreme fear of failure
  • constant worry about grades
  • constant obsession with homework
  • sudden apathy
  • sudden increased sleep
  • stomachaches
  • headaches
  • anxiety surrounding managing time
  • anxiety surrounding organization
  • extreme fear of judgment and/or being disliked
  • withdrawing from friends
  • isolation

Treatment for Teen Academic Issues

When offering support for teen Academic issues, it’s very important to consider the greater holistic context of the teen’s particular challenges. Often, even if teens are struggling in classes and/or with academic standing, the stress and emotional aspects present make it more complicated than teens simply improving test scores, getting a tutor, or studying more. Because of this, support needs to include helping teens to not just improve in school, but also improve their insight into themselves as well as their ability to cope with stress more healthily, in the future.

In our therapy sessions for teens struggling with Academic Issues, our therapists work with teens to help them identify and express the nature of what they’re experiencing, in its fullness. This includes teens talking about their most noticeable symptoms, as well as the deeper underlying emotional issues and struggles. It’s quite common for teens to have not spoken honestly with anyone about their experiences and so even beginning to speak freely and honestly can provide them with considerable relief, as well as encouragement and hope. Some of the other things therapists might focus on with teens include but are not limited to: how to respond to stress more healthily, how to organize themselves, how to prioritize, identifying stressors and triggers, identifying need for support, ways to reduce stress, how to practice relaxation during stressful moments, how to rebuild confidence and a sense of identity, and how to see themselves in a more healthy way.


Paradigm San Francisco

At Paradigm San Francisco, we’re committed to designing the most precise, holistic treatment plans possible, and allow us to help teens address their struggles at the deepest level possible. The result is teens that come to us not only gain relief from symptoms and recover from stress, but leave here with more resources and strength to be their best selves, moving forward.