5 Mental Health Book Recommendations for Teens & Parents

Mental Health books for teens and parents

5 Mental Health Book Recommendations for Teens & Parents

As a therapist and author, people often ask me what my favorite mental health books are. The books that I find myself constantly recommending, several times a week, to clients, friends and colleagues are listed here. Whether you’re a parent looking for tools to help your teen, a young adult trying to gain skills to manage your emotions or a clinician, these books are essential for all of us.

5 Mental Health Books that Help

No matter your age or what you’re struggling with, there is a book for that. This is a list of the books I frequently recommend to friends, clients and colleagues.

The Body Image Workbook for TeensThe Body Image Workbook for Teens: Activities to Help Girls Develop a Healthy Body Image in an Image-Obsessed World

Paperback by Julia V. Taylor PhD, Melissa Atkins Wardy (Foreword)

I’ve used this book so many times with teens and young adults who are struggling with body image and eating-disordered behaviors. It’s easy to apply the tools and understand the concepts, leading to a new way of looking at one’s body and mindset.

In The Body Image Workbook for Teens, you’ll find practical exercises and tips that address the most common factors that can lead to negative body image, including: comparison, negative self-talk, unrealistic media images, societal and family pressures, perfectionism, toxic friendships, and a fear of disappointing others. Taylor offers powerful coping strategies to deal with these intrusive and frustrating thoughts that often lead to unhealthy behaviors.

Express YourselfExpress Yourself: A Teen Girl’s Guide to Speaking Up and Being Who You Are (The Instant Help Solutions Series)

by Emily Roberts MA LPC, Jennifer L Hartstein PsyD (Foreword)

I wrote this book for people of all ages, to help them learn the essential skills to communicate with confidence. We targeted teen girls in the first edition so that we could help them learn how to speak up for themselves, build confidence and tackle tricky situations that often crush one’s self-esteem in these formattable years. Using assertiveness, emotional regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness skills, this book offers scripts and tricks to express one’s needs and become a more confident communicator.

The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook, Sixth EditionThe Anxiety & Phobia Workbook, Sixth Addition

by Edmund Bourne, PhD

I started working with this book over 15 years ago, and I noticed such a profound difference when using it with my clients. Now, in its sixth edition and recommended by therapists worldwide, The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook has become an essential resource for people struggling with anxiety and phobias giving scientific explanations for anxiety and tools that work to reduce its impact on one’s life.

Living with anxiety, panic disorders, or phobias can make you feel like you aren’t in control of your life. If you’re ready to tackle the fears that hold you back, this book is your go-to guide. Packed with the most effective skills for assessing and treating anxiety, this evidence-based workbook contains the latest clinical research and skills.

Parenting a Teen Who Has Intense EmotionsParenting a Teen Who Has Intense Emotions: DBT Skills to Help Your Teen Navigate Emotional and Behavioral Challenges

by Pat Harvey, Britt H. Rathbone

Any time I am talking to a parent who needs some guidance on helping their teen or young adult, I recommend this book. It’s an important book by two renowned experts in teen mental health and helps parents and professionals with evidence-based skills for helping teens manage emotions using proven-effective dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT).

Readers will gain practical skills to help themselves and their teens effectively manage their feelings. This book will help your teen (and you) gain awareness of their emotions, and offer tools to help them choose how to respond to these emotions in effective ways.

You Are a BadassYou Are a Badass®: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life

by Jen Sincero

I have gifted this book to so many friends and clients, it’s an essential read for anyone struggling with taking the next step in their lives.

Jen Sincero gives practical (and pretty comical) advice to motivate and help you begin to reframe your mindset so you can reach your goals. There are 27 tiny chapters full of inspiring stories, sage advice, effective tools and exercises, helping you to identify and change the self-sabotaging beliefs and behaviors that stop you from getting what you want.


Authored by:  Emily Roberts, MA, LPC