There are over 42 million teenagers in the United States. Sadly, with dramatic increases in diagnoses of depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and addiction, many teens will require some type of residential treatment to address their struggles. Parents desperate to find help for their kids often turn to these inpatient treatment facilities hoping their children can be helped. These residential treatment facilities can literally be a lifesaver for some kids.
Despite the help that can be provided at a residential treatment facility, these vulnerable teens can be taken advantage of and abused or neglected. For this reason, it is critically important that parents stay alert for signs of abuse or neglect of their children. Simple things, like: checking in frequently and at different times; observing for physical injuries; recognizing a change for the worse in your child’s behavior, mood, body language, or verbal communication are all things a parent can do while their child is receiving treatment. Any one of these can often be a red flag and signs of trouble that require immediate intervention. This is especially true for teens with disabilities who might not be able to easily communicate abuse. The bottom line is that while you should hope your children will receive help from a residential treatment facility, you must stay vigilant that they are being properly cared for.