SUWS of the Carolinas, is a life-changing wilderness-based treatment center for children, adolescents, and teens struggling with aggression.
At our outdoor treatment center for troubled teens, we blend traditional clinical treatment modalities with wilderness therapy to empower adolescents and teens to overcome their mood disorders and find lasting recovery.
Learn More About Aggression
Most teens and adolescents will act out in aggressive ways at various points throughout their development. For example, they may hit or push others, may fight with other children over toys, or throw temper tantrums when frustrated. It is also fairly common for siblings to get in minor arguments on a rather regular basis. However, if your child is consistently engaging in overly aggressive, hostile, violent, or destructive behaviors, it can be indicative of a greater problem and point to the need for professional therapy at a treatment center.
Teens and adolescents who struggle with aggression will often antagonize others, instigate physical altercations that result in harm to oneself or harm to another child, and may be constantly argumentative. These children may also be verbally aggressive, have extreme difficulty controlling their temper, and may threaten others.
Often, children and adolescents who act out in aggressive ways will regularly get in trouble at school, may have a difficult time making friends, and usually experience conflict within the home. Failing to seek care for this type of behavior can place a young person at risk for the development of multiple negative consequences. Fortunately, effective treatment is available to help aggressive teens and adolescents learn how to control their impulses and learn healthier ways for coping with their frustration.
Causes and Risk Factors for Aggression
The presence of aggression in children and adolescents can be associated with a number of different underlying problems. Many years of research has determined that factors such as the existence of certain mental health disorders, certain environmental influences, and even genetics, can explain the presence of aggressive behaviors in teens and adolescents. You may be asking yourself, “does my child have extreme levels of aggression and in need of therapy for this behavior?” Described in more detail below are some of the most commonly accepted causes for aggressive behavior in children and adolescents:
Genetic: While genes alone do not cause aggressive behaviors, extensive research on the topic has determined that some individuals inherit a genetic predisposition for the development of aggressive behaviors. Adolescents who have a family history of aggression are at a higher risk for becoming aggressive themselves.
Environmental: In addition to a predisposition for aggression, most researchers believe that there are a number of environmental influences that play a significant role in the onset of aggressive behaviors. For example, ongoing stress, experiencing a traumatic experience, being the victim of physical or sexual abuse, having harsh and controlling parents, and the lack of a safe environment can all possibly cause a young person to act out in an aggressive manner.
Mental health disorders: There are multiple different mental health conditions that may manifest with aggression. For example, children with autism spectrum disorder or intellectual disability may become aggressive because they have difficulty dealing with their anxiety or frustration and are unable to verbalize their feelings like other children can. The following list of disorders may include aggression and aggressive behavior symptoms:
- Autism spectrum disorders
- Intellectual disability
- Adjustment disorder
- Bipolar disorder
- Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Conduct disorder
- Intermittent explosive disorder (IED)
- Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD)
- Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Substance use disorders
Effects of Aggression
When aggressive behavior is not properly addressed with comprehensive therapy at a treatment center, it can cause a number of negative consequences to develop in a teen or adolescent’s life. Furthermore, it is possible for the consequences of this inappropriate behavior to carry over into adulthood, potentially causing some life-changing effects. The following are some possible effects that can result from untreated aggression:
- Disciplinary action taken at school
- Suspension or expulsion from school
- Poor academic performance
- Multiple interactions with the legal system
- Engagement in risky behaviors
- Increased conflict with others
- Inability to obtain or maintain healthy relationships with others
- Development of certain mental health conditions
- Substance abuse
- Multiple injuries
Types of Treatment Offered at SUWS of the Carolinas
More often than not, when a child or adolescent is demonstrating aggressive behaviors they are struggling with the presence of a mental health condition. If you have a child who is continuously acting out in an aggressive manner and is out of control at home or at school, it is highly recommended that you seek out professional mental health therapy at a treatment center. Furthermore, if these aggressive behaviors are greatly disrupting your child’s life, treatment is needed in order to help reduce this disturbing behavior and help reduce the potential for the development of more serious consequences.
A wilderness treatment center is one option of care that has shown to be effective in treating children and adolescents who are presenting with aggressive behaviors. Within a wilderness setting, young people will be under the constant supervision of experienced mental health professionals, who will provide around-the-clock care and can immediately intervene should an aggressive outburst occur. Furthermore, when a young person enters our treatment center, they will undergo a thorough psychiatric and medical evaluation, which will identify the underlying cause for the development of aggressive behavior. Once this information is collected an individualized treatment plan can be developed, which will outline therapy methods that will address your child’s specific concerns. Our leading teen wilderness treatment center provides a wide variety of therapeutic methods that will teach your child new methods for coping with the symptoms of mental health conditions, which in turn will help to reduce the aggressive behavior. Finally, our treatment center offers family education and support, which will help parents learn to better manage their child’s behavior and help them remain successful once treatment is complete.