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Teenagers turn to prescription drugs to deal with mental health

Article image for Teenagers turn to prescription drugs to deal with mental health

New statistics show one in 13 Australian teenagers are taking antidepressants and other prescription drugs for mental illness.

The confronting statistics show high anxiety is fueling childhood depression and suicide.

Child and family psychologist Michael Hawton says parents often step in too quickly to solve children’s problems and need to take on a “coaching” role.

“I don’t think it’s just counseling, I think it’s helping parents and … significant adults in children’s lives to come up with good congenital behavioral strategies,” he said.

“There are micro skills for anxiety as well, and if parents can learn those, and teachers can learn those, it really does make a big difference to how children handle adversity.”

Click Play to hear the full interview

If you are anyone you know needs support call Lifeline 131 114, or Beyond Blue 1800 512 348.

(Photo: iStock by Getty Images.)

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