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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What is the best treatment for my son with depression?

    My teenage son suffers from depression and has been seeing the school counsellor. Do you think I should be sending him to a psychologist instead?
  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • 1

    Agree

    My research interests include immunology and the mechanisms of amyloid formation. The latter has implications for people who are dealing with Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease ... View Profile

    I would be inclined to suggest that you encourage your son to see his GP.

    S/he will be able to draw up a “Mental Health Care Plan” with him.

    That will entitle him to a number of Medicare-subsidised sessions with mental health professionals (clinical psychologists and/or psychiatrists).

    There is some general information which you might find helpful here: http://www.psychology.org.au/medicare/fact_sheet/ .

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  • 1

    Agree

    1

    Thanks

    Shannon Moule

    Psychologist

    I'm a registered psychologist with experience working in both community and public health settings. I have experience working with children, adolescents, and adults with a ... View Profile

    I agree with Dr Simon Easterbrook-Smith. Psychologists are able to provide evidence-based treatments for depression, including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. 

    A wonderful resource and support is Headspace. You and your son can find information about depression and it's treatment at http://www.headspace.org.au/is-it-just-me/find-information/depression

    Kids Help Line are also a wonderful 24 hr community support which offers both anonymous phone and online counselling http://www.kidshelp.com.au

  • My research interests include immunology and the mechanisms of amyloid formation. The latter has implications for people who are dealing with Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease ... View Profile

    Adding a bit to what Shannon wrote, which I agree with:

    Learning Cognitive Behavioural Therapy methods from my psychologist was an important factor in my recovery from clinical depression.

    I hope that your son will benefit in the same way.

    All the best.

  • I have been working in Eltham, Melbourne as a relationship and family counsellor for over twelve years. I draw on current theory and research about ... View Profile

    Usually counsellors employed through the education dept are psychologists, you can perhaps check if this is the case with your son's counsellor. School counsellors will routinely refer out to GPs and private psychologists if they think a student needs more assistance than they are able to provide. I wonder what your concerns are, that you are thinking your son may need a different level of help, and if you are able to raise these concerns with your son's existing counsellor? Without breaking confidentiality (she will not be able to talk with you about what is being discussed in sessions) she may be able to address some of your questions, particularly if your son's depression is not lifting (in which case a discussion with your GP about whether medication may be required may be a good idea). I wonder also if you have been able to talk with your son about what benefit he feels he is gaining from seeing the school counsellor? And whether he has a preference for seeing someone within the school versus an external professional? While you may  need to over-ride his preferences if you are sufficiently concerned, it's important if you can to work with them, as his 'buy-in' to the process will be significant in his ability to make use of the tools he is given (such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which any counsellor working with depressed or anxious young people should be well versed in). All the best.

  • 1

    Thanks

    Dr See Yeung Yao

    Chiropractor, Kinesiologist

    See is a holistic practitioner proficient in Chiropractic, Functional Medicine, Applied Kinesiology, and Personalized Nutrition. See is constantly striving to learn, and currently undergoing studies ... View Profile

    Other than the fantastic ideas raised already, it is also extremely important to investigate whether any biochemical imbalance is contributing to his depression.  

    The most common biochemical imbalance related to mental health is:

      • methylation imbalances
      • metal-metabolism disorders
      • heavy metal overload
      • pyrrole disorders
      • fatty-acid / other nutrients deficiency
      • malabsorption / food allergy / food intolerance
      • glucose disorders

      Investigatios include advanced laboratory testings, comprehensive evaluation on his history and presentation, specific questionnaire developed to access certain biochemical inbalance.

      You can assist his recovery and the effectiveness of other therapies by adderssing any hidden biochemical imbalance. 

      You may be interested in other articles of related topics on this link: 

      http://seekholistichealth.com.au/blog/ 

      Hope this piece of information is helpful.

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