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The power of positive self-talk

Psychiatrist Parul Tank talks about common adolescent issues and encourages them to take therapy

A tumultuous family tragedy coupled with a dearth of a doctor in the family prompted Parul Tank to pursue MBBS. In pursuit of becoming a doctor, she chose psychiatry and aims to be ethical in her practice. She recalls the space of mental health 15 years back, and says, “there was stigma attached to the term.” 15 years hence, at least we are talking about it.

In her years of working with Fortis Hospital (Mulund), Asian Heart Institute (Bandra Kurla Complex) and privately seeing clients, she has dealt with “a lot” of adolescents. “A lot of them come because parents bring them,” she says. Some of the common concerns are anxiety, depression, substance abuse, rebellion and angst.

She shares a story about a 15-year-old girl who encountered bullying in school. Instances of teasing piled up that resulted in the teenager avoiding school for almost one-and-a-half year. The bullying gave rise to low self-esteem and a complete lack of self-worth. This not only built her anxiety, but also affected her academic performance.

One of the ways Tank counselled her was to indulge in positive self-talk. “I am worthless became, I am worthy,” she quips. It took almost three months for the young girl to regain her sense of equilibrium and go back to school. She then gave her exams. Some of the techniques that Tank uses in her counselling are Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), REBT and mindfulness.

Was it satisfying helping a teenager get back on track? “Very satisfying. Many people have a aha moment where they wish they had come for therapy earlier,” she says. In an afterthought, she adds that, “even if I make a minuscule of a difference in someone’s life, I feel good.” 

If you have a story to share, Email it to us HERE.

If you have a query, Email it to us HERE.

You can also chat with the counsellor by clicking on Teentalk Expert Chat.

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Puberty talk with the Doc Part 2 – Adolescent health and hygiene

Gynecologist, Dr. Ankesh R Sahetya is a man on a mission as he preaches adolescent health and menstrual hygiene to young adults across schools, thus helping them lead a healthier life…

There is obviously a huge difference in how girls and guys experience puberty and adolescence. That said; both guys and girls need to be educated about adolescent health and hygiene.   

Dr. Ankesh Sahetya is here to help...

Regarding adolescent health and hygiene

Personal care and hygiene is crucial to adolescent health. As you go through pubic changes, it is important that you learn to deal with them.

Girls

Girls need to know that they start their reproductive careers as soon as they start menstruating. So they are now capable of getting pregnant.

Health tips -

  1. Menstrual care – Girls need to know the difference between a menstrual pad and a tampon. You need to know when and how to use it. If you are not sexually active and your hymen is intact, you shouldn’t use a Tampon which I am guessing 15 year olds are not.  

  2. Hygiene – You need to know that the pad or the Tampon needs to be changed every 4 to 6 hours, you can’t wear the same pad for an entire day.

  3. Menstrual pain – The girls can take Antispasmodic medication for menstrual cramps on the first and second day but I suggest you consult your gynaec before you take any medication. Make sure you talk to a trusted adult; a female teacher or your mother about menstrual care. Don’t be scared of bleeding.   

  4. Skin care – You might experience acne, body odor, pubic hair growth, skin outbursts. All of these are a part of pubic growth. Eating healthy and maintaining high standards of hygiene is what you ensure you do.

  5. Contraception – If you are under age we suggest you wait for sex, so you can make a more responsible, informed choice. But if you do have a partner and are sexually active, then make sure you use a condom or an OC pill. I get asked about the pill a lot but I suggest you don’t use it too often as it can mess up your menstrual cycle.

 

Guys

Guys need to know that once they hit puberty at the age of 13 or 14, they are capable of becoming fathers as they can now produce sperms.

Health tips -

  1. Contraception – It is natural to be attracted to and to be curious about the opposite gender but it is important to be responsible about it. Always use a condom if you decide to get physical with someone. This is for contraception and hygiene both.  

  2. Pornography – Porn is something I suggest you keep yourself from being addicted to. The technologically advanced times we live in have given us easy access to everything and that makes it even more important for you to be responsible.  

  3. Masturbation – Boys come to me with questions about masturbation, about how healthy or not it is and how many times in a day can they do it. Well, do it only when you feel the urge to, that is when your hormone levels are high. Don’t make it a routine.   

  4. Skin care – You might experience acne, body odor, pubic hair growth, skin outbursts. All of these are a part of pubic growth. Eating healthy and maintaining high standards of hygiene is what you can ensure you do.

  5. Hygiene – Basic genital hygiene and sanitary care is important weather or not you are sexually active.  

If you have a story to share, Email it to us HERE.

If you have a query, Email it to us HERE.

You can also chat with the counsellor by clicking on Teentalk Expert Chat.

Comments

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