Coaching parents of older children and adolescents to set clear boundaries while still fostering autonomy and normal development.

Scope in Pediatrics

  • The effectiveness of parenting styles promoted in popular culture may not be supported by sound evidence.

  • Navigating adolescence is often perceived to be one of the largest parenting challenges.

  • Parents look to their health care providers for guidance on how to effectively parent children and adolescents.

Teaching Points

  • Parental communication and problem-solving skills, stable family structure, and a realistic perspective all contribute to successful parenting and boundary setting.

  • A balanced, “authoritative” parenting style has been strongly associated with positive mental health and behavioral outcomes in children and adolescents.

  • Pediatricians may incorporate anticipatory guidance regarding boundary setting and normal adolescent development into their routine encounters.


For Physicians

Robin AL. (2011) Communication between parents and adolescents. In M.M. Fisher (Ed.) Textbook of Adolescent Health Care. AAP.*

Steinberg LS. (2011) Parenting the adolescent. In M.M. Fisher (Ed.) Textbook of Adolescent Health Care. AAP.*

DeVore ER, Ginsburg KR. The protective effects of good parenting on adolescents. Curr Opin Pediatr 2005;17:460-465.*

Ginsburg KR. (2020) Reaching Teens: Strength-Based, Trauma-Sensitive, Resilience-Building Communication Strategies Rooted in Positive Youth Development (2nd Edition). Elk Grove Village, IL. AAP.*

Newman K, Harrison L, Dashiff C, Davies S. Relationships between parenting styles and risk behaviors in adolescent health: an integrative literature review. Rev Lat Am Enfermagem 2008;16(1):142-50.*



For Families

Ginsburg KR. (2015) Building Resilience in Children and Teens. American Academy of Pediatrics. 

Kowal-Connelly SK. (2019) Parenting Through PubertyAmerican Academy of Pediatrics.  

Center for Parent & Teen Communication  

Parenting Your Teen Mental Health Literacy. 

Parenting for Brain 

Teen Brain Tip Sheet 


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Special Acknowledgment

The AAP gratefully acknowledges support for the Pediatric Mental Health Minute in the form of an educational grant from SOBI.