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You Don't Have to Live with Depression

If you have depression, you may feel sad, exhausted and hopeless about your future. Even though everyday life may be overwhelming, recovery is within reach.

From childhood through adolescence and adulthood, our team of state-certified behavioral health specialists delivers personalized depression treatment.

Help for Depression at MultiCare Behavioral Health

We offer comprehensive services for people struggling with depression:

  • Children: In addition to primary care settings and our behavioral health agency, Child & Family Services are available in select school districts, pediatric clinics and Mary Bridge Children's Hospital.
  • Older Adults: Our outpatient Older Adult Services program specializes in treating adults over 55 years old.  With a large team of state-certified geriatric mental health specialists, we specialize in age-appropriate treatment programs.
  • Asian Pacific Americans: Meeting the unique needs of immigrants and refugees, our Asian Counseling program offers culturally appropriate care.
  • Adults: With state-certified mental health professionals in 11 primary care locations, our integrated services help you get the care you need. Adults with private health insurance or who are interested in fee-based services receive expert treatment through our General Counseling Services. Adults with serious mental illness receive treatment and support through our Adult Community Support Services.

What is Depression?

Everyone occasionally feels blue or sad from time to time. However, these feelings are usually short-lived and pass within a couple of days.

When you have depression, you feel this way all the time. Depression interferes with your daily life.

People with depression are often at risk for other conditions, including anxiety disorders, panic disorder and chemical dependency. If you already have another condition, depression can make it worse.

What Causes Depression?

Depression is one of the most common mental health conditions in the U.S. A variety of factors can cause depression, including:

  • Biology: Brain imaging studies, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), have shown that the brains of people who have depression look different than those of people without depression.
  • Heredity: Some types of depression tend to run in families. However, depression can occur in people without a family history.
  • Stress: Stressful life events, such as losing a loved one or losing your job, may trigger the symptoms of depression.
  • Other medical conditions: Certain medical conditions, such thyroid disorders, can cause symptoms similar to depression.

What Are the Symptoms of Depression?

Everyone experiences the symptoms of depression differently. These symptoms may include:

  • Persistent sad, anxious or "empty" feelings
  • Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
  • Irritability and restlessness
  • Loss of interest in once-pleasurable activities or hobbies
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering details and making decisions
  • Trouble sleeping at night, early morning wakefulness or excessive sleeping
  • Overeating or appetite loss

How Do We Diagnose Depression?

We diagnose depression through an interview with one of our physicians or mental health professionals. During this interview, you discuss your symptoms; including how long you’ve experienced them and how they are affecting your daily life.

How Do We Treat Depression?

Even if you have severe depression, treatment can help you feel better. The sooner you receive treatment, the more effective it is. Common treatments include:

  • Counseling: Talking with one of our state certified mental health professionals can help you:
    • Learn how to process negative thoughts in a more constructive way
    • Change behaviors that may be making your depression worse
    • Find ways to work through troubled relationships that may be contributing to your depression
  • Medication: Your doctor, working together with our professionals, may decide that a medication, such as an antidepressant, should be part of your treatment for depression. If medication is recommended, it may take some time to find the right one for you.

You should not expect to suddenly "snap out of" your depression. However, treatment can help your mood lift gradually.

Note: The condition description on this page is intended to be informational only, and should not be considered a diagnosis or medical advice. Please seek the advice of a qualified medical professional if you believe you have any of the symptoms described here.

Contact Us

Our services are available in convenient locations throughout Pierce and South King counties. 

Outpatient and Specialty Services

Call 888-445-8120 to make an appointment

Adolescent Inpatient Behavioral Health

Call the referral intake number at 253-403-0556

Adult Inpatient Psychiatric Care

Monday-Friday, 8am to 6pm

After hours and weekends

Geriatric Psychiatric Care

Monday-Friday, 8am to 4:30pm

After hours and weekends

Navos Services

Monday-Friday, 9am to 5pm

Navos 24-hours crisis line