Building Resilience: Affective Disorders in Adolescent Students
Roth, Tyson J.
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Affective disorders, such as anxiety and depression, are present and rising in adolescent students throughout North America. As students are developing these ailments of mental health, schools are being placed in a position where they must take action. Teen suicide remains a relevant problem and drop-out rates are continuing to rise in North America (Balfand et al., 2014). When the impact of anxiety and depression is this significant for students it is important for schools to begin the process of teaching student resilience. Building resiliency in students cannot be a one-size fits all approach. Affective disorders are diverse, and the reason a student is carrying a specific anxiety or issue varies depending on the situation. Determining the cause is the first step in building resilience to affective disorders. After a cause has been determined, the levels of intervention can be assessed. Schools can participate in building student resilience by promoting coping strategies and the building of prosocial skills. Building resilient students is a focus that schools and educators are going to need to focus on in order to support students and help produce productive citizens of society. The various roles of educators in a school, from principal to counsellor to teacher all need to be active in building student resiliency to affective disorders. Family dynamics and a community’s socioeconomic standing are all factors that must be taken into consideration. After all of these things are weighed and assessed, the appropriate interventions at the appropriate levels can begin. Thorough reflection of best practices is an important piece in determining the success of resilience building in students.