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How Do I Choose the Best Teenage Depression Treatment?

The severity of a teen's depression will be used to determine the best treatment.
A counselor can work with a depressed teen.
Article Details
  • Written By: Angela Crout-Mitchell
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 22 April 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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There are several medically approved techniques used as teenage depression treatment options, including medication, conventional psychological therapy, and alternative treatments. The first step to deciding on the best treatment course is to have the child evaluated by a professional and work with a team of experts to choose the best and most effective treatment methods for the individual patient. As with adults suffering from depression, each patient has different needs that must be addressed during the treatment phase. The severity of the condition, the patient's history, and family history will all be considered before treatment begins. It is not unusual for several depression treatments to be tried before the right combination is found.

After diagnosis, medication is commonly employed as the first step in teenage depression treatment. Doctors and other medical professionals face a special challenge when prescribing anti-depressant medications to teens. This age group is well-known for experiencing wildly changing hormone levels that can interfere with the effects of medications as well as their bodies' reactions to the medicines. For this reason, it is incredibly important for patients to strictly adhere to the doctor's orders and advise him or her of any adverse side effects as quickly as possible. Parents are very important to this process as well and should carefully monitor their child, especially in the initial stages of the treatment.

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Psychological therapy is often used along with anti-depression medications as a teenage depression treatment. Most medical experts agree that medication alone is ineffective for helping these patients cope with their condition and make strides in living a more productive, healthier life. This type of treatment often includes one-on-one sessions with a qualified therapist or psychologist as well as group therapy sessions with peers and families. The frequency of the therapy sessions will be decided on by the therapist, the patient, and parents and family. Therapy helps to provide an outlet for the patient's feelings as well as a means for the psychologist to instruct the patient on ways to more effectively deal with their depression.

Alternative therapies can also be very useful for treating adolescent depression. Dietary changes, meditation practices, and gentle exercises, such as yoga and Pilates, are often suggested in addition to more conventional teenage depression treatment options. This holistic approach to treating depression in young people has proven to be effective for a great number of patients, and many find they continue the practice long after the initial bout of depression has passed.

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