Dr. Leslie Walker has recently been named medical director at Penn State Children’s Hospital; she was previously chief of Division of Adolescent Medicine at Seattle Children’s Hospital. She is renowned for her work and passion for conducting research regarding the prevention of teen pregnancy, substance abuse, and teen drop outs. More recently her strong advocacy on keeping children safe on social media and her promotion for physical and emotional health of adolescents stems from her belief that mental health is not given enough attention. Dr. Walker recognizes that a mental health issue can be caused by more than one factor in a adolescents life; these complex problems include low self-esteem, lack of support, or the lack of food. I now look forward to viewing the movie Screenagers to find out what role she plays in the documentary.
Today’s teens experience stress, internet addiction, and self-esteem issues. Out of the three, stress is the most important issue that many adolescents go through. All teens experience stress in their lifetime, but studies by APA poll Stress in America show that many teens have the stress levels that are rival of that of adults. Stress can be healthy when one feels it will lead to something they desire. Furthermore, stress can also be helpful because looking back at times when you felt defeated but persevered and accomplished a stressful task can lead to confidence. However, many teens struggle with stress that can affect learning and relashionships. In addition, stress decreases sleep quality among teens. For instance, the National Sleep Foundation states that “teens need at least eight hours of sleep to function at peak performance, yet only about 15 percent of teens get an adequate amount.” Not getting enough sleep makes dealing with stress difficult and exhausting, which can also harm concentration, listening, memory, and problem solving. Stress can also worsen a teens grades because they are not able to perform to the best of their ability. Some stress comes from home and can affect a person’s everyday life. Consequently, accomplishing schoolwork can be pushed to their last priority. Likewise, stress can intensify adolescent’s feelings of anger and irritability, which can lead to a high chance of rage and social withdrawal. Stress can sometimes be hard to identify because it can mimic normal teen behavior such as emotional, physical, behavioral, and cognitive. For teens, the source of stress comes from school, the college process, and financial concerns.