Depression Therapy in San Francisco 

Depression can throw kids off their game and have them feeling lost.  In some cases it brings life to a complete halt or has a negative impact on grades, behavior, and relationships.  Sasha Lustgarten, a San Francisco based therapist, specializes in working with pre-teens, teens, and young adults to relieve symptoms and lift the fog of depression.  Using current and proven clinical methods, Sasha helps kids feel excited about life again.  

Depression can show up differently for different people

Depression in kids can be hard to identify.  Teen depression is often expressed through disruptive behaviors, aggression, and anger or an overall lack of focus. Sometimes your child may not be clear about the way that he or she is feeling. The emotions just seem to spill over.

In many cases of depression, your kid’s eating and sleeping habits change drastically and you begin to notice the negative impact in how they function at home and in school.

Depression can look a lot like ADHD to teachers and other adults. Your kid’s motivation and ability to focus can be sharply diminished by their lack of interest and energy.

Some adolescents get so depressed that nothing seems worth it anymore.  They may sabotage themselves by taking frequent and unnecessary risks, withdrawing socially from family and peers, engage in “cutting”, or worse. They may wonder if life is still worth living.

In a never ending struggle to understand who they are, teens try and figure things out for themselves. And they usually don’t sound the alarm when it gets difficult.  It is common for a teen to not tell their parents that they feel depressed. They likely don’t even want to acknowledge it themselves because it can feel like they are failing to figure things out.

Your child may feel horrible and choose to shut down emotionally so they don’t have to feel the pain.  Unfortunately, when they turn off their bad and ugly emotions, the good ones frequently go too.  They can become emotionally numb from head to toe. Once they enter this stage, it can be difficult to find relief.  Where can they turn to find the energy and motivation to change their mood and behavior? Therapy and professional support can really help to kick-start the process.

People get depressed for a reason

It is important to let your son or daughter know that they are not alone.  Depression is not something to feel ashamed about. Depression is the most common mental health problem in the US with more than 6% of the population experiencing some sort of depression.

Many kids and parents find it helpful to know that depression often has a purpose. Depression can be an alarm, of sorts, that something in your child’s life isn't working, needs attention, or is worth changing.  A skilled therapist can transform feelings of depression into information that can be valuable to both kids and parents.

Your tween or teen can change

The good news is most depression can be treated successfully.  Studies show more than 80% of people experience improvement with treatment. Depression carries risks and often gets worse the longer you wait to treat it.  The difference between your child feeling depressed and feeling happy is so important! Get them the help they need so they can feel better soon.

I would like to help

I have helped many adolescents heal from depression by using proven therapeutic methods and techniques. As both a Marriage and Family Therapist and Professional Clinical Counselor, I focus on adolescent wellness to help your son or daughter relieve their depression and increase motivation to fully engage in life again.