Depression Treatment, Orange County, CA

In 2020, 8.4% of Americans had experienced at least one major depressive episode. This percentage represents roughly 21 million adults. What’s more interesting is that 10.5% were female respondents vs. the 6.2% that were male.

Regardless of gender, depression is an overwhelming issue that affects the American population. The US, in general, has roughly a 4% suicide rate. Suicide is now the 10th leading cause of death in the US. Depression treatment centers like Adler Health are important in saving lives and teaching people how to cope with their mental health disorders.

What is Depression?

Depression (major depressive disorder) is a common and serious mental health disorder that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think, and how you act. Fortunately, it is also treatable. Depression causes feelings of sadness and/or a loss of interest in activities once enjoyed. It can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems and can decrease a person’s ability to function at work and home.

What are the Common Symptoms of Depression?

women on a depression treatment in orange county

Symptoms can vary from mild to severe but usually include:

  • Anxiety, agitation, or restlessness
  • Feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness, or hopelessness
  • Angry outbursts, irritability, or frustration, even over small matters
  • Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much
  • Tiredness and lack of energy, so even small tasks take extra effort
  • Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased cravings for food and weight gain
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in most or all normal activities, such as sex, hobbies, or sports
  • Frequent or recurrent thoughts of death, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts, or self-harm
  • Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures, self-blame
  • Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions
  • Slowed thinking, speaking, or body movements

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you may be suffering from depression. Depression is a serious medical condition that requires treatment. Adler Health is a mental health treatment center in Orange County, CA. We specialize in treating depression and other mental health conditions.

What Can Cause Depression?

There are many possible causes of depression. It can be caused by a combination of genetic, biological, psychological, and environmental factors. Depression is not a sign of weakness or something that you can just snap out of. It’s a real mental health disorder that requires treatment.

Studies have shown that depression can run in families, suggesting there’s a genetic link. Having a first-degree relative with depression increases your risk. However, many people who have no family history of depression also become depressed, indicating that genetics is not the only factor involved. Both genes and environment likely play a role in determining who gets depressed.

Certain medications can contribute to depression. For example, some drugs used to treat high blood pressure, cancer, seizures, extreme pain, and to achieve contraception can increase the risk of depression. Patients may feel down due to the side effects of these medications or because of their health conditions. A mental health professional can help you diagnose if your medications may be causing your mood disorder.

Major life changes, such as moving, losing a job, getting divorced, or retiring, can trigger feelings of sadness, stress, or anxiety that can lead to depression. Even positive events like starting a new job, graduating, getting married, having a baby, or moving can lead to depression in some people. That’s because mental health conditions need to be treated to manage symptoms effectively. Depression treatment helps people refocus their behaviors and manage their health better.

A person suffering from certain chronic illnesses, including diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and Parkinson’s disease, can trigger depressive symptoms. This is likely due to the physical stress these conditions put on the body, as well as the emotional stress of dealing with a serious illness.

Neurotransmitters in the brain, specifically serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, play key roles in mood regulation. Research suggests that changes in the function and effect of these neurotransmitters and how they interact with neurocircuits involved in maintaining mood stability may play a significant role in depression and its treatment.

Hormonal changes during pregnancy and after childbirth can trigger mood swings and symptoms of depression. Many new mothers experience the “baby blues,” but some face a more severe form of depression known as postpartum depression.

Changes in the body’s balance of hormones may be involved in causing or triggering depression. Hormone changes can result from thyroid problems, menopause, and other conditions.

Alcohol, nicotine, and drugs such as cocaine and heroin can contribute to depression. People who are addicted to these substances often feel anxious, depressed, and suicidal. They may use drugs or alcohol to relieve their depressive symptoms, but substance abuse can make depression worse.

People who have experienced physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, military combat, or traumatic incidents such as car accidents or natural disasters are at higher risk of developing depression.

Chronic sleep problems are associated with an increased risk of developing mental disorders, including depression. Insomnia, sleep apnea, and other sleep disorders can disrupt your body’s natural cycle and affect your mood.

Individuals with life-threatening illnesses often have difficulty dealing with negative emotions and may develop depression as a result. The fear and anxiety that comes with a serious illness can be overwhelming and lead to feelings of helplessness and hopelessness.

Depression is a complex disease with multiple contributing factors. It’s important for anyone experiencing symptoms of depression to seek professional help. Treatment can involve medication, psychotherapy, lifestyle changes, or a combination of these.

What are the Types of Depression?

group therapy for depression

This is one of the most common forms of depression, affecting about 7% of adults in the U.S. at some point in their lives. Symptoms include a persistent feeling of sadness or lack of interest in activities, along with other physical and mental issues like fatigue, difficulty concentrating, changes in appetite or weight, and thoughts of death or suicide. These symptoms must be present for at least two weeks before a diagnosis of major depression.

This form of depression is characterized by a long-term (two years or more) depressive mood. It’s less severe but more enduring than major depression, affecting about 1.5% of U.S. adults in a given year. The symptoms are similar to major depression but might not be as disabling, though they can prevent normal functioning or feeling well.

This mental illness involves periods of severe mood episodes from mania (an extreme high) to depression (an extreme low). Around 2.8% of U.S. adults experience bipolar disorder each year. Depressive episodes include symptoms like feeling sad, hopeless, or irritable, along with fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and changes in eating and sleeping habits.

SAD is a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons, starting and ending at about the same times every year. It’s more common in the fall and winter months, though there’s a less common form that occurs in the spring and early summer. Symptoms specific to winter-onset SAD include oversleeping, weight gain, and craving for carbohydrates.

This affects women during pregnancy and after childbirth. It’s estimated that about 10-15% of women experience postpartum depression after giving birth. Symptoms may include extreme sadness, anxiety, and exhaustion that might make it difficult for new mothers to complete daily care activities for themselves or others.

This is a subtype of major depression that occurs when severe clinical depression is accompanied by a form of psychosis, such as hallucinations or delusions. These psychotic symptoms usually have a depressive theme, such as delusions of guilt, poverty, or illness.

This is a stress-related, short-term, non-psychotic reaction to significant life events. Grief, for instance, is a common trigger. The symptoms are similar to those of major depression but are directly related to the traumatic event.

This type of depression differs from the persistent sadness typical of major depressive disorder. Those with atypical depression may experience a temporary mood lift in response to positive events. Other symptoms include increased appetite, more sleep than usual, a feeling of heaviness in your arms and legs, and sensitivity to rejection.

Also known as smiling depression, people appear happy and cheerful, but internally, they’re struggling with depression. It’s dangerous because people might not recognize their need for depression treatment and, therefore, don’t seek help. It also makes it difficult for others to recognize their pain and provide support.

If you are experiencing symptoms of depression, Adler Health can help you determine the best mental health treatment program for your needs. For each type of depression, each person requires a unique treatment plan to help them recover.

Our Depression Treatment Services


There are many ways that people can treat depression. Some people may only require therapy, while others may need medication to help them cope.

Depending on your depression symptoms and your unique circumstances, you may want to enter into a treatment program for depression. At Adler Health, we offer inpatient programs for more severe cases of depression and outpatient programs for individuals who would prefer to stay at home during treatment.

Both forms of treatment are effective; however, inpatient programs provide 24/7 care as patients live at the facility and attend treatment and therapy throughout the day. This may not be possible for people who have work or school responsibilities, and for that reason, we have an outpatient treatment option. You can still attend the same types of therapy, just around your schedule.

Brain stimulation therapies involve activating or inhibiting the brain directly with electricity. They are typically used to treat severe, major depressive episodes when other treatments have not been effective.

There are several types of brain stimulation therapies, including:

  1. Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT): This is one of the most effective treatments for severe depression. It involves passing an electric current through the brain to trigger a seizure, which causes changes in brain chemistry that can reverse symptoms of certain mental illnesses.
  2. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS): This is a procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain. It’s typically used when other treatments haven’t been effective.
  3. Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS): This involves implanting a device in the body that sends electrical pulses to the brain through the vagus nerve. It’s used for people with long-term or recurrent major depression.
  4. Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS): This involves surgically implanting a pair of electrodes into a specific area of the brain. The electrodes produce electrical pulses that regulate abnormal impulses caused by mental illness.
  5. Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS): This uses direct electrical currents to stimulate specific parts of the brain. It’s generally considered safe but is still under study for its effectiveness in treating depression.

Group therapy involves one or more psychologists leading a group of around five to 15 patients. Typically, groups meet for an hour or two each week. Some people attend individual therapy in addition to groups, while others participate in groups only.

In group therapy in Orange County, patients can benefit from the mutual support and feedback provided by peers who are struggling with the same issues. They can experiment with new behaviors and ways of thinking within a safe and supportive environment. Group therapy can also help individuals realize that they’re not alone in their struggles, which can significantly reduce feelings of isolation often associated with depression.

Individual therapy in Orange County, also known as talk therapy, involves regular one-on-one sessions with a mental health professional, such as a psychiatrist, psychologist, or licensed counselor. The goal is to change the negative thinking and behavior patterns associated with depression and to develop healthier thought patterns and coping strategies. There are various types of individual therapy, including cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), and interpersonal therapy (IPT).

Holistic therapies focus on treating the whole person, meaning the mind, body, and spirit rather than just the symptoms of depression. These can include a range of treatments such as acupuncture, yoga, meditation, guided imagery, and nutritional therapy. While these approaches may not replace conventional treatments, they can complement them and may help reduce symptoms and promote a sense of well-being.

There are several classes of medications used to treat depression.

  1. Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs): SSRIs work by increasing the level of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps regulate mood, in the brain. Examples include fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), and citalopram (Celexa).
  2. Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRIs): These medications, including venlafaxine (Effexor) and duloxetine (Cymbalta), increase the levels of serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain.
  3. Tricyclic Antidepressants (TCAs): Although these are effective, they tend to have more side effects than newer antidepressants and are usually considered only after other drugs haven’t worked. Examples include Imipramine (Tofranil) and Nortriptyline (Pamelor).
  4. Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOIs): These are older medications that are generally used only when other drugs haven’t worked due to their potential for serious side effects and dietary restrictions. An example is phenelzine (Nardil).
  5. Atypical Antidepressants: These are a variety of antidepressants that don’t fit neatly into the other classes. They include bupropion (Wellbutrin), mirtazapine (Remeron), and vortioxetine (Trintellix).
  6. Antipsychotic Medications: For those with psychotic depression, a combination of an antidepressant and an antipsychotic is typically necessary.

Remember, it’s important to work closely with your medical professionals when starting any new medication, as they all have potential side effects and interactions. Patience is key, as it often takes several weeks to feel the full effects of these medications.

Learn More About Our Depression Treatment Center in Orange County

our depression treatment center in orange county

If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, we can help. Our treatment center for depression in Orange County, California, offers a variety of treatment options that can be tailored to your unique needs. We offer both inpatient and outpatient treatment so you can get the level of care that’s right for you. Contact us today to learn more about our treatment center for depression in Orange County, California!