Family therapy can help to reduce suicidal thoughts and depression in adolescents. Suicide is the third leading cause of death in American teenagers, accounting for more than 1,300 deaths in children between the ages of 12 and 18 in 2005. Researchers from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia studied 66 children aged between 12 and 17 who were suffering from suicidal thinking and depression. Some received Attachment-based Family Therapy while others received 'treatment as usual' in the community. By the end of the treatment those children who had had family therapy - which aims to resolve family conflicts and promote family strength - were four times more likely to have no suicidal thinking. They also showed a more rapid decrease in depression symptoms and were more likely to stay in treatment longer.
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