Adolescent Psychiatrist Questions Child & Adolescent Psychiatry

Looking for help with my teenage daughter

I know the teenage years are tough for kids. Should I have my 14 year old daughter see a physciatrist? There aren't any particular problems now but I was thinking that might stop any issues before they start.

17 Answers

It's a good idea to do that as psychiatrists are usually good at picking up symptoms as they are emerging and can help parents before they get out of control In many cases kids get neglected due to their size as they look bigger but inside there are fears of the unknown expectations of the people around them and their own need to be reassured They need more attention than normal and the opposite happens They get more neglected
I don't think your daughter should see a psychiatrist just because...If you
believe she is having some problems, you could have her see a psychologist
for a diagnostic interview to determine if further treatment is necessary.
I hope this helps.
I would say that, in more cases than not, this will actually work against its very intention by pathologizing your daughter's ordinary behavior/routines and ultimately leading her to internalize your misrepresentations of her self-image, -worth, and -confidence. To the contrary, I usually recommend that parents attend therapy themselves in lieu of their teens to develop strategies for opening up the lines of communication with their teenagers.
Hard to say without knowing your family. I would speak to the pediatrician about that. If there are no specific concerns, than I am not sure a psychiatrist would be that helpful.
I would only recommend she see someone if she has complained about problems, or if you see something is wrong. Otherwise, you cannot "prevent" any issues with an appointment with a mental health professional. The best prevention is involvement in your child's life, with love and support.
As a rule of thumb, most teenage issues are dealt properly within a stable and nurturing family. If you suspect that there are issues that are not clear to you or perhaps you don't feel comfortable in dealing with them, having a couple of consults with a therapist could be useful and even healthy.
Not necessarily that can prevent any issues if they are not present currently. Having open and supportive conversations with teenagers help.
I would see little need to have preemptive consultation with a psychiatrist for your asymptomatic daughter. Look to assuring an open relationship between your daughter and yourself as well as her father. Establish an open door policy for her to address any issues she is concerned about.

Probably of equal importance, assure that your daughter is establishing strong relationships with very stable friends, the number of friends isn't as critical as the quality of friends. Be optimistic about your daughter.
I am happy to hear that you have no particular concerns.

Teen years are tough for adults as well:), they often times bring up different issues from the parents' own teen years and it may be a good idea for the parent to consult with a psychologist to guide them during this time. It can allow you a sounding board, to know when and if your being overly concerned is justified or no reason for concern.
Absolutely not. Let her grow on her own for right now. 14 is when things change for the females. They become closer to their fathers and blame things on their mothers. Not to worry, that changes and they become closer to their mothers around 18 or so. A Psychiatrist might put them on medication that they really don't need. This is a time when they need a little freedom and they need to spread their wings a bit. That doesn't mean you can't discipline them. You can of course but you as a parent needs to change things a bit. Don't be afraid to talk to them now as adults and give them choices. I hope this has helped you. Thank you!
Not necessary at this point unless your daughter has issues she would like
to discuss. If you were to see someone, start with a psychologist. A
psychiatrist generally does not do therapy and can prescribe medication.

Rather than see a mental health professional, it is important for teens to remain connected to their parents. A psychiatrist or psychologist cannot "stop any issues before they start." However, a strong relationship between parent and child can be protective.
I'm all for being proactive, but I don't think that is necessary. I think that setting aside 10-15 minutes of time every day to talk to your daughter about her life (school, friends, clubs, concerns) is a better proactive approach. Letting her know that you are always there for her and that she CAN talk to you will pay off. Also, attend her activities, meet her friends, invite them to your house so that you get to know them, will all set up a trusting relationship between you. If you have other children, make sure you eat together AT THE KITCHEN TABLE (not in front of the TV) and talk about everyone's day, including yours, so that your children know about your life and stressors, just as you do about theirs.
A therapist may help her understand the transition she is going through and the reasons for her behavior and guide in better decision making at present and the future. If you have any concerns, a psychiatric evaluation can always rule out any major diagnosis that may need treatment and if not needed, then refer her to the most appropriate therapist. Medication should be used only when absolutely needed, but not delayed due to fear of medication. In some cases, it's the best first option.
Adolescent specialist is the doctor to go to.

Jian Kang MD FAAP
Prophylactic psychiatric intervention is a questionable notion. Considering the nature of adolescence, particularly questionable.
Dear Teenage Years parent,

This reply is for informational purposes only and does not constitute treatment.

The teen years are indeed very tough. Most adults shudder at the idea of going back to revisit them. While hard, most folks get through them OK. Given that you don't have any specific concerns at the moment, the first step might be to have some talks with your daughter about how she feels she is doing and any of the challenges you are concerned for her.

If she feels OK and up to challenges of being 14, then getting out in front of things might not be necessary. You could also contact a local adolescent(teen) psychiatrist to ask for a consultation visit to discuss your concerns. A more detailed and in-person consultation could provide a place to voice your concerns to a professional and see if they feel an appointment for your daughter would be helpful.


Todd Koser, Psy.D.
NJ & PA Licensed Psychologist