Depression Treatment


When you or someone you love – a child, adolescent, or young adult – receives a diagnosis for clinical depression, you understand quickly you need to take action. Clinical depression, called major depressive disorder (MDD), is more than sadness or feeling down. The symptoms and emotions associated with depression can be completely overwhelming and prevent an individual from engaging in activities they love, and connecting with the people they love.

Depression can disrupt life – but we know how to help.

Treatment for Depression: Creating Safety, Stability, and Hope

Depression is more than a bout of sadness someone can’t get over. It’s a medical condition – a disorder of the brain, specifically – influenced by a variety of factors. Family history of mental illness, early experiences, social factors, personal medical history, and alcohol/substance use can all play a role in the development of a depressive disorder. No matter the origin or cause of depression, it’s important for people who don’t have depression to understand this fact:

Depression is not a choice. People with depression don’t want their symptoms, and they’d rather spend their days doing anything but dealing with them.

However, that’s exactly what they have to do, because clinical depression – like most clinical mental health disorders – rarely resolves on its own. A person with depression needs professional support provided by experienced mental health professionals. And children, teens, and young adults need support provided by psychiatrists, counselors, and therapists, who know how to tailor treatment to meet their specific needs.

At BACA, We Work With Patients and Families to Understand the Root Causes of Depression and Develop the Practical Tools Necessary to Restore Balance and Promote Healing.

Our skilled, compassionate clinical staff has decades of experience supporting children, teens, and young adults with depressive disorders. One thing our collective experience teaches us is what young people with depression need most is to be seen, heard, and understood. They need the compassionate support of competent adults, because something inside them – whether brain chemistry or something else – prevents them from finding the happiness and joy that seems to come easily to other young people.

What is Depression?

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V) defines major depressive disorder as follows:

“…an overwhelming feeling of sadness, isolation, and despair that last two weeks or longer at a time.”

Signs and Symptoms of Depression

Here are the most common symptoms of depression in adolescents:

Teen Depression: Signs and Symptoms

  • Persistent sadness
  • Loss of interest in favorite activities
  • Frequent tears/crying
  • Persistent feelings of hopelessness
  • Recurring anger and irritability
  • Feelings of worthlessness and guilt
  • Fatigue
  • Withdrawal from friends and family
  • Boredom
  • Extreme restlessness
  • Memory problems
  • Difficulty concentrating and making decisions
  • Sleeping too much/too little
  • Sudden weight gain or loss
  • Lack of attention to/interest in basic personal hygiene
  • Suicidal behavior: talking about suicide, thinking about suicide, making plans for suicide*
  • Physical issues like headaches, joint aches/pains, or stomach problems that have no clear cause and don’t respond to typical remedies


 If you or someone you love is in immediate danger, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room immediately. If they’re in crisis but not imminent risk of harm, please call National Emergency Mental Health and Suicide Crisis line: dial 988 for help, 24/7/365.

To receive a diagnosis of clinical depression, one of the first two symptoms on the list above must be present every day for two weeks or longer.

Types of Depression

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) identifies five primary types of depressive disorder:

  • Major depressive disorder (MDD). This is what most people think of when they think about depression, with the defining characteristic being sadness/withdrawal from activities/friends that persists for more than two weeks.
  • Persistent depressive disorder (PDD). People with PDD have similar symptoms as people with MDD, but they’re less severe and may persist for two years or more.
  • Seasonal affective disorder (SAD). This type of depression is associated with the seasons, and occurs most often in winter, but can occur in the summer as well.
  • Depression with psychosis. Also called psychotic depression or depression with psychotic features, a person who meets criteria for MDD and experiences delusions (thoughts with no basis in reality) and hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that aren’t there) may receive a diagnosis for depression with psychosis.

Treatment for Depression at BACA: Empathy and Understanding
Firmly Grounded in Evidence and Experience.

Research confirms the most effective treatment for depression in children, adolescents, and young adults follows a comprehensive, holistic, integrated treatment model. Effective treatment plans include a combination of individual therapy, group therapy, lifestyle changes, and medication if needed. BACA clinicians augment these traditional treatment approaches with complementary modalities including mindfulness, meditation, and expressive therapies such as journaling.

Types of therapy at BACA:

  • Individual therapy
    • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
    • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
    • Motivational interviewing
    • Solution focused therapy
  • Group therapy:
    • Coping groups
    • Emotional processing groups
    • Healthy living
    • Family therapy
  • Complementary therapies:
    • Writing/journaling
    • Yoga
    • Mindfulness: meditation, breathing
    • Drama therapy: role playing
  • Psychiatry and medication management

At BACA, our holistic, integrated, individualized treatment plans include most, but not all, of the following:

  • Individual, group, and family therapy
  • Weekly individual psychiatry sessions
  • Education about depression and depression treatment
  • Lifestyle changes, including:
    • Healthy eating
    • Exercise
    • Mindfulness
  • Classes and workshops for family
  • Antidepressant medication, if needed

At BACA, we take the time to learn about each patient and understand what works for them. We design a treatment plan the leverages strengths, improves challenge areas, and gives each individual the greatest chance of managing the symptoms of depression and achieving stable, sustainable, long-term recovery.