Outpatient day therapy helps fight depression, behavioral issues

Sep 28, 2018, 6:19 AM | Updated: 7:56 am
Outpatient day therapy can be a big help to teens fighting depression and behavioral issues.

TAYLORSVILLE — Depression knows no bounds, especially in teenagers who suffer from it and other behavioral issues. But hope still abounds for them in the form of outpatient day therapy in Utah.

Something wasn’t right in the eyes of this Utah mother who spoke with KSL Newsradio.

“It’s hard to know what is normal teenage behavior, versus, this is a warning sign, and they have said or done something that crosses a line,” she said.

Her 17-year-old daughter stayed in bed, missed school for days, had severe anxiety and paranoia. They tried medicines and talk therapy.

One day, the girl told her mother, “I can’t do this anymore. I don’t want to live.”

The two want to stay anonymous, especially after the teen tried to harm herself. That led to a trip to the emergency room, and then to the Wasatch Canyons Behavioral Health Campus.

By then, Mom said she felt, “A lot of worry, a little bit of guilt. Should I have brought her in sooner? But also, relief, knowing that she was going to start a journey and get the care that she needed to get better.”

The teen spent a few nights there, then began weeks of daily outpatient therapy. Most teens are skeptical when they arrive.

“Well, first of all, I validate their feelings,” said Samantha Castleton, LCSW at Wasatch Canyons. “It makes sense that it’s uncomfortable. It makes sense that they don’t want to be here.”

Therapists work with teens through outpatient day therapy at Wasatch Canyons

Therapists work with teens through outpatient day therapy at Wasatch Canyons


Castleton works with a team of psychiatrists and therapists.

“And that way, we can look at that bio-psycho-social approach, making sure we are helping kids not just from one direction, but from multiple directions,” she said

Wasatch Canyons also stresses DBT, or Dialectical Behavioral Therapy.

“These are skillsets to help kids regulate their emotions, tolerate distress, and communicate more effectively,” Castleton said.

Gardening, art and music are some of the things offered through outpatient day therapy

Wasatch Canyons offers outpatient day therapy for teens in Taylorsville.

In these programs, parents and children get the same lessons so they communicate better.

Doctor Kristi Kleinschmit is medical director for the University Neuropsychiatric Institute’s Kidstar and Teenscope programs.

“There’s a home note that the families fill out,” Dr. Kleinschmit said. “We get feedback about how the kids are doing. We can change their treatment plan based on that.”

Her programs, and those at Wasatch Canyons, have fully accredited schools with music, recreation and art, as well as a transition program to place teens back into regular school.

An example of artwork from teens in outpatient day therapy

Through outpatient day therapy, teens may participate in DBT or music and art classes

“We’ll actually have the kids go to school for a day, and then come back and check in with us, so that we can make sure they’re reintegrating into school in the least stressful way,” Dr. Kleinschmit said.

Insurers work with these and other providers of outpatient day therapy.

The 17-year-old girl had a relapse and a second stay at Wasatch Canyons this summer. But Mom says she just started senior year.

“Every day, her brain develops a little bit more, and she gets more practice with the skills that she learns,” the mother said. “I know she’ll be OK someday.”

Today’s Top Stories

Mental Health Resources

utah women suicide...
Simone Seikaly

In Utah, more women are likely to attempt suicide than men

Utah women have specific risk factors for suicide, including domestic violence, religious dissonance, opioid and substance use, and LGBTQ+ identies.
19 days ago
Twitter self-harm Twitter is warning that governments around the globe are making more requests of ...
Simone Seikaly

Twitter self-harm hashtag concerning for Utah mental health experts

A Twitter hashtag linked to self-harm content on the social media platform prompts concern from Utah mental health experts.
26 days ago
Gov. Cox mental health...
Allie Litzinger

Gov. Cox opens up about past mental heath struggles at press conference

Gov. Cox spoke of a friend's suicide, Utah's high suicide rate, and resources that are available to those experiencing mental health issues.
1 month ago
kids and body image KSL radio...
Simone Seikaly

How to help kids maintain a healthy body image in the digital age

Body image issues can arise in kids as young as 3 years of age. A psychiarist joins Dave and Dujanovic to offer insight.
2 months ago
Incumbent Rep. Chris Stewart, R-Utah, debates GOP primary challenger Erin Rider aon Tuesday, May 31...
Simone Seikaly

Rep Stewart’s suicide prevention hotline, 988, goes live this week

It's been a long time in the making but the new number to call for suicide prevention, 988, will finally be live across the nation this week.
3 months ago
mental health rural...
Don Brinkerhoff

Staffing may be short at Huntsman Mental Health Institute; expert says reach out anyways if you need help

The Huntsman Mental Health Institute is experiencing a staffing shortage, but Business Operations Manager Anne Stephens says to call anyways if you need help.
4 months ago

Sponsored Articles

a worker with a drill in an orange helmet installs a door in the house...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

Home improvement tip: Increase the value of your home by weatherproofing doors

Make sure your home is comfortable before the winter! Seasonal maintenance keeps your home up to date. Read our tips on weatherproofing doors.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
A paper reading IRS, internal revenue service is pictured...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Outpatient day therapy helps fight depression, behavioral issues