Home Page > Article > Adolescent Mood Swings and Self-Esteem At 5

Research 1
Adolescents’ mood swings decline as they get older, according to a study by psychologists at several Dutch Universities. They followed 474 adolescents-40 percent of whom often displayed aggressive behaviors-from ages 13 to 16. Using internet diaries, the teens rated their daily moods during three weeks of the school year for five years. The researchers found that during the course of adolescence, teens’ moods became more stable. Girls had higher variability than boys in happiness and sadness, but the rate of change across adolescence was similar for both sexes (Child Development, November/December). So parents have faith that your teen’s moods will stabilize as they get older. However, if your teen exhibits aggressive behaviors or symptoms of depression or their behavior patterns strange drastically, please consult with your psychologist.

Research 2
By age 5 children have a sense of self-esteem to that of adults, according to a study by University of Washington researchers. They administered a task to 235 five year olds to measure how strongly the preschoolers feel positive about themselves. The task used small unfamiliar flags with researchers instructing the children which of the flags were “yours” and “not yours.” Then, using buttons on a computer, children responded to a series of “me” and “not me” flags and “good” words such as fun, happy, and nice, and “bad” words, such as mad, mean and yucky, presented over a loudspeaker. The patterns of presentation and responses indicated that the 5-year-olds associated the “good” words more with the “me” flags than the “not me” flags, indicating generally high self-esteem, to an equal degree in girls and boys. This pattern is similar to self-esteem patterns in adults (Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, January).

Susie Bean Gives Team