Like adolescents across the nation, Minnesota teens are struggling. Rates of teen mental health problems, suicidal ideation, and vaping are all on the rise in the state. In fact, new statistics show that nearly a quarter of 11th graders in Minnesota have considered suicide. Yet thousands of teens suffering from depression have not received either outpatient care or treatment at a Minneapolis rehabilitation center.
Research on teen rehabilitation in Minnesota reveals that increasing numbers of young people in the so-called North Star State are suffering from mental health issues. The findings of both national reports and in-state student surveys show that adolescents are in need of treatment but are unable to access Minnesota mental health services.
Minnesota Mental Health Statistics
Each year, Mental Health America (MHA) ranks all 50 states and Washington DC in terms of mental health, substance abuse, and access to care. MHA’s latest report found that 14 percent of Minnesota youth—61,000 teens—had at least one major depressive episode in 2020. That puts the state at number 24 among the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Furthermore, one out of every 10 Minnesota teens experienced severe depressive episodes in 2020. Hence, the state ranked at number 27 in this category. In terms of substance abuse, the state ranked at number 19, with 4 percent of youth in Minnesota suffering from a substance use disorder.
In the Chicago area, the closest major metropolitan area outside of Minnesota, the CDC’s Youth Risk Behavior Survey also shows highly troubling data on teen mental health. According to the survey, 17 percent of high school students in Chicago have seriously considered suicide, 13 percent have made a plan to attempt suicide, and 10 percent have actually made an attempt. In addition, 38 percent reported feeling sad or hopeless almost every day for at least two weeks in a row.
of Minnesota youth experienced severe depressive episodes in 2020
of Minnesota youth had at least one major depressive episode in 2020
1 of 10
students in 11th grade have reported attempting suicide
of 11th graders in the state reported seriously considering suicide at some point in their lives.
of youth in Minnesota are suffering from a substance use disorder
A Growing Need for Minnesota Mental Health Services and Minneapolis Rehabilitation Centers
Here are some additional statistics on mental health and substance abuse from the MSS:
- Teen girls were nearly twice as likely as boys to report mental health, emotional, or behavioral issues.
- The number of 11th-grade girls in Minnesota who report having long-term mental health, behavioral, or emotional problems more than doubled from 2013 to 2019, from 15 to 30 percent.
- Among the 11th-grade girls who reported missing school in the last 30 days, 24 percent said their absences were due to feeling very sad, hopeless, anxious, stressed, or angry.
- 25 percent of Minnesota 11th-graders reported using an e-cigarette, also known as vaping, in the past 30 days—a 54 percent increase from the 2016 survey.
- Twice as many 8th graders reported using an e-cigarette in the past 30 days, compared to the 2016 MSS.
“The results of the Minnesota Student Survey show a number of concerning pieces of data, including student vaping and declines in mental health. Our students are talking to us and we must listen.”
– Mary Cathryn Ricker, Minnesota Education Commissioner
Access to Minnesota Mental Health Services
Far too many struggling teens in Minnesota are not getting the help they need, indicating a lack of treatment centers in Minneapolis and other parts of the state. The 2021 MHA rankings showed that 55.4 percent of Minnesota youth with major depression did not have access to mental healthcare in 2020—an increase of 8 percent without care from the prior year.
That’s a slightly lower number than the national average: A discouraging 59 percent of US teens didn’t receive any treatment for depression in 2020, according to the MHA rankings. And it means that 32,000 teens in Minnesota received no care at all for their depression. Furthermore, even though most youth in the state had insurance plans that covered Minnesota mental health services, only a third of the state’s teens with depression received any type of consistent treatment.
The lack of access to rural or Minneapolis rehabilitation centers or other treatment providers is a problem that has been acknowledged by the state’s mental health experts. Dr. Joshua Stein, president of the Minnesota Society of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, says that the state faces two specific issues in delivering mental healthcare. One is the difficulty creating “a good prevention model” to help identify individuals’ mental health issues before they reach a crisis point. The other is the shortage of care providers. “In rural Minnesota, this is an incredible issue,” Stein said.
What to Expect in a Minneapolis Rehabilitation Center
At the highest-quality teen rehabilitation centers, the clinical model of care addresses the underlying causes of mental health and co-occurring disorders, not just the behavioral symptoms. Therefore, teens work with credentialed behavioral healthcare experts to heal the trauma and attachment wounds that catalyze anxiety, depression, and maladaptive behaviors like substance abuse, self-harm, and eating disorders.
Teen rehabilitation and mental healthcare at a Minneapolis rehabilitation center, or at treatment centers in other parts of the state, typically includes a stay of 30 days or longer. Research finds that longer-term care (at least 90 days of treatment) is necessary to make lasting positive change. Therefore, the best treatment centers in Minneapolis also provide strengths-based academic programming for teens, so they don’t fall behind in school while receiving the mental health treatment they desperately need. While leaving their daily life, families, and friends can be very difficult for teens, it is often necessary for recovery.
The Most Important Components of Teen Rehabilitation and Mental Healthcare
In a residential treatment center that provides specialized care for adolescents, each teen has a tailored treatment plan, with clear goals and measureable outcomes. Moreover, the plan includes a variety of evidence-based clinical and experiential modalities. Because every teen responds differently to different therapeutic approaches, it may take time to find the ones that are most effective for them. Ideally, a Minneapolis rehabilitation center will give teens the opportunity to experience a wide range of modalities, including:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
- Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
- Family therapy, such as the Attachment-Based Family Therapy model designed to prevent teen suicide
- Group therapy that helps teens build community and overcome the feelings of isolation caused by anxiety and depression
- Experiential approaches such as Equine-Assisted Therapy, horticulture and culinary therapy, and art and music therapy
- Mindfulness approaches like yoga and meditation.
Adolescents in teen rehab also experience a structured schedule that allows them to learn and practice new, healthy approaches to daily living and self-care, which they can take home with them when they leave treatment. Moreover, teens build caring and supportive relationships with peers and mentors. These authentic connections are at the heart of the healing journey.
In addition, they learn skills for building resilience and coping with stress and difficult emotions. Moreover, the most effective teen rehabilitation programs recognize that involving the family in the treatment process is an essential part of achieving long-term, sustainable healing.
Looking for a Minneapolis Rehabilitation Center?
For families seeking teen rehabilitation and mental healthcare, it’s important to find a program that provides customized care plans designed by psychiatrists, therapists, and counselors. Each client should be given an in-depth assessment and assigned a treatment team that understands their specific needs and history. Furthermore, the optimal environment for a treatment features comfortable, home-like surroundings as opposed to an institutional or hospital setting.
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Once teens are ready to leave treatment, clinicians work with them to create a comprehensive plan for continuing care after discharge. This typically includes a Partial Hospitalization Program, Intensive Outpatient Program, or another type of Minnesota mental health services.
Ultimately, the goal of treatment—for Minnesota teens and teens in every state—is to support physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. To learn more about residential and outpatient care for teens at Newport Academy, contact us today.