Skip to Content

Health Library

Family Therapy for Depression in Children

Topic Overview

Sometimes depression in children and teens may be triggered by or result in conflict within the family. Family conflict can trigger depression symptoms or make them worse. And family therapy aimed at correcting these issues can improve the outcome. But this type of counseling used alone has not been proved effective for treating depression in children and teens. Family therapy may be helpful when added to other types of counseling (such as cognitive-behavioral therapy) and medicines (such as antidepressants).

Family therapy can be beneficial in maintaining good relationships within the family while dealing with the pressures of depression. The entire family will be able to express their concerns and fears regarding how depression is affecting their loved one and the family dynamics. They will be able to get support for their own frustrations of trying to help the person get through depression. Also, they will learn new ways of getting along as a family.

Family therapy should be conducted by a qualified counselor who has had specific training in treating families. Health professionals with training in treating families include a:

  • Child and adolescent psychiatrist.
  • Child and adolescent psychologist.
  • Family therapist.
  • Social worker.

Related Information

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
David A. Axelson, MD - Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Last Revised May 3, 2013

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

© 1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

Decision Points

Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.

You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:

Interactive Tools

Get started learning more about your health!

Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.

Symptom Checker

Feeling under the weather?

Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.