The data, published along with think-tank NPC's paper Measure What You Treasure, was drawn from more than 7000 children in the UK aged between 11 and 16, and was gathered over the last three years by more than 50 participating charities, using NPC's Well-being Measure.
The research shows that boys and girls both grow more dissatisfied with their lives as they get older, with girls' happiness falling significantly faster than that of boys.
The self-esteem of girls falls away consistently, while boys' self-esteem remains much more stable during their teenage years.
Anne Kazimirski, deputy head of measurement and evaluation at NPC, said: "There is a powerful message for Government and charities to take from this data.
"It isn't just that that young people are struggling, but that different children will have different needs," she said.