New study shows teens are more stressed than adults

By, Deborah Netburn (LA Times)

Teenagers in America report they are just as stressed out as adults, according to a new study by the American Psychological Assn. And during the school year, many teens report even higher stress levels than adults.

In an online survey of 1,018 teens and 1,950 adults conducted in August, the average stress level reported by teens during the school year was 5.8 on a 10-point scale where 1 is least stressed and 10 is most stressed. Adults reported an average stress level of 5.1.

Teens were a bit more relaxed in the summer, though, when their reported stress level fell to 4.1.

“We assumed that teens experience stress, but what was surprising was that it was so high compared to adults,” said Norman Anderson, chief executive of the APA. “In adulthood there are work pressures, family pressures and economic pressures, but adolescents still reported higher levels of stress.”

Eighty-three percent of kids said school was responsible for at least some of the stress in their life. They were also stressed out about finding time to manage all their activities, with 59% of kids citing that as a stressor.

Money and work are the most dominant sources of stress for adults, according to the report. More than half of adults (69%) report work is a significant source of stress. A smaller percentage (59%) report the economy in general stresses them out.

And stress is not distributed equally throughout the teen world. Teen girls are more stressed than teen boys (5.1 to 4.1), and overweight kids are more likely to be stressed than normal-weight kids (5.2 to 4.4).

So how do we de-stress these kids? Exercise might help. Teens who exercise at least once a week reported lower average stress levels than teens who exercised less frequently. But just 38% of kids say they turn to exercise to relieve stress. More teens turn to video games (46%) or going online (43%).

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4 Comments to “New study shows teens are more stressed than adults”

    Hillary said:
    February 12, 2014 at 7:15 AM

    They signed the deal with China.

    MyTakeOnIt said:
    February 12, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    Don't play so much video games. Fighting, killing and dying so many times is stressful.

    Teens don't need to be in huge social soap operas like school when we have online resources. Hardly anywhere in life will one be that has so much meaningless social drama than high school. They need to learn to cope with the smaller localized dramas that occur in workplaces but not a larger contained community like high school. Study that and let me know how that works out.

      You said:
      February 12, 2014 at 12:01 PM

      Stay off the Internet! It is EVIL and you know it :—– HEAD!

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