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Resources to Help Kids Thrive Newsletter

Therapy for Depressed Teens

A weekly update of content from childmind.org featuring parenting advice, in-depth articles, and the latest thinking on children’s mental health and learning disorders.

November 1, 2022

For teenagers with anxiety or depression, there’s an effective form of therapy you may not know about. It’s called acceptance and commitment therapy, or ACT. “Acceptance” here means accepting that you have negative thoughts and feelings — they don’t need to be avoided or changed. “Commitment” means choosing to make positive changes in your life. Put together, this approach means that painful feelings don’t need to stop you from taking action to meet your goals. In ACT, kids learn to acknowledge those emotions and move on.

In a new piece on childmind.org, we explore ACT — how it works, who it’s for, and how it’s different from the more common cognitive behavior therapy (CBT). We also look at how anxiety and depression affect teenagers, including some whose most noticeable symptoms are irritation and anger. And we round up what you need to know if you’re considering medication for anxiety or depression for your child.

Related Resources

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Teens

ACT is a form of therapy that can help older kids with anxiety and depression.


Depression and Anger

How irritability and anger can be signs of depression in children and teenagers.


Mood Disorders and Teenage Girls

Why they are more vulnerable than boys, and what signs and symptoms you should look for.


How Anxiety Affects Teenagers

Signs of anxiety in adolescents, and how they're different from anxious children.


Guide to Medications for Anxiety in Children

What they are, how they should be used, and side effects to be aware of.


Medication for Kids With Depression

What parents should know about children and teenagers taking antidepressants.