Saturday, January 29, 2011

Integrating Family Therapy in Adolescent Depression Treatment


"Adolescent depression, particularly where suicidal behaviour is involved, is a complex and pressing mental health problem and demanding for families, therapists and services alike. This article reviews the evidence-based literature for adolescent depression including family therapy approaches. It suggests an integrative treatment approach that includes individual psychological treatment like CBT, medication where required and a family therapy intervention is supported by the literature. The focus of the latter is psychoeducation, building resilience and hope, enhancing communication, reducing relational conflict between parents and adolescents and addressing attachment and relationship issues. A systemic framework for integrating family therapy in the evidence- based treatment of adolescent depression is described. This is based on an ethic of hospitality towards different languages of therapy, which is illustrated by a detailed example from family therapy practice."

Larner, G. (2009), Integrating family therapy in adolescent depression: an ethical stance. Journal of Family Therapy, 31, 213–232.

Can I get a Hallelujah! and Amen!  CBT and medication (if necessary) and family therapy. Incorporating hope, resilience, communication, relationships and attachment into the family therapy treatment plan - integration. Can you dig it?!

A SAMHSA (2003) nationwide survey of school mental health services found that at the high school level, the two most common presenting problems were depression and substance abuse. Both of which, the research shows, are effectively treated with family interventions.  The same survey showed that family support services were most challenging to provide - as reported by the study respondents.

We are not there yet.  What's the best path from here to there?

1 comment:

  1. Great post! Most people think of therapy as involving a one-to-one relationship with a therapist. However, there are times when it is more appropriate for family therapy and marital counseling either instead of or in addition to individual therapy.
    We’ll Help You Find a family therapy massachusetts.


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