What is Depression?

“Almost all people suffer some form of intense inner pain at some time in their lives. The suffering might be depression, anxiety, substance abuse, or suicidal thoughts and it results from the battles we wage against our thoughts as we futilely try to get rid of our historie.”   – Steven C. Hays, PhD

Do you feel down, hopeless, or lonely? Do small tasks take a great deal of energy, or do you feel constantly tired and sluggish? Have you been having thoughts about death or dying? These are some of the most common signs of depression.

You are not alone.

Depression is one of the most prevalent issues in mental health, affecting nearly approximately 1 in 10 people in the U.S. (Compton, Conway, Stinson, & Grant, 2006; CDC, 2010).

Symptoms of depression might include (DSM-5):

  • Loss of hope
  • Helplessness
  • Feeling down or sad
  • Tiredness
  • Irritability
  • Thoughts of suicide or death*
  • Isolation
  • Sleep or appetite changes

* If you or a loved one is experiencing thoughts of suicide, contact the suicide hotline immediately (1-800-273-8255), or call 911.

Depression can also look very different from person to person, as some people may feel tearful and isolated while others feel irritable and angry. Children with depression often appear irritable and distressed (DSM-5), and so many parents will mistake childhood depression for hostility or aggression. Furthermore, depressive symptoms can also start other symptoms to occur (i.e. loss of sleep can lead to irritability, which leads to loss of relationships, which leads to isolation, etc.).

Depressive symptoms can be caused by a number of factors, but people often feel depressed after some sort of loss. Loss of a loved one, loss of a job, loss of meaning or purpose. The human brain is incredibly complex and designed for connection. When we experience prolonged loss and suffering, our brains often have a chemical imbalance that tends to require an intervention to restore (Pehrson et al, 2015).

Therapy is the most effective treatment for depression (Barth et al, 2013; Beard et al, 2016). Medication is also very helpful, and typically a combination of therapy and medication works the fastest for symptom reduction (Cuijpers et al, 2013).

If you believe that you or a loved one suffer from depression, I can help.

Treatment for Depression – Dr. Jaffe Can Help

Seeking therapy is the most important first step in overcoming depression. I am confident that we can work together to help you feel better and live your life to the fullest.

I use a multi-method, eclectic approach to treatment of depressive symptoms. I draw from Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to help people manage negative thoughts and feelings. CBT is one of the most effective therapy options for people with depression (Barth et al, 2013; Honyashiki, Furukawa, Noma, Tanaka, & Chen, 2014; Carter et al, 2013).

Therapy for depression begins with a brief intake interview to accurately identify the problem and provide a diagnosis. I then carefully design a treatment plan that is best suited to your needs, prioritizing your health and wellbeing.

As you begin therapy for depression, you will learn how to:

  • Make behavior changes to improve mood regulation
  • Identify negative or distorted thought patterns
  • Manage suicidal thoughts
  • Improve your relationships
  • Feel connected
  • Have self-worth

I believe that you have the power to make real changes to your life. Do not let depression keep you from living your life to the fullest.

Interested in Therapy Services?

If you are interested in therapy services, please contact me as soon as possible.

I would love to hear from you, and I’d be happy to answer any questions you may have. It is never too late to get help.

Schedule your first appointment today, and give wellness a try!

Read About Dr. Jaffe

Want to learn more about me?

Click on About Me to learn more about my credentials and specialties.

My clinic is based in Encino, California, but I also work with people from all over the area, including Los Angeles, Thousand Oaks, San Fernando, Inglewood, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Pasadena, and beyond!

Want to Learn More?

Interested in learning more about therapy and mental health? Check out the tabs above, or click on the links below:




Barth, J., Munder, T., Gerger, H., Nüesch, E., Trelle, S., Znoj, H., … & Cuijpers, P. (2013). Comparative efficacy of seven psychotherapeutic interventions for patients with depression: a network meta-analysis. PLoS medicine, 10(5), e1001454.

Beard, C., Stein, A. T., Hearon, B. A., Lee, J., Hsu, K. J., & Björgvinsson, T. (2016). Predictors of depression treatment response in an intensive CBT partial hospital. Journal of clinical psychology, 72(4), 297-310.

Carter, J. D., McIntosh, V. V., Jordan, J., Porter, R. J., Frampton, C. M., & Joyce, P. R. (2013). Psychotherapy for depression: a randomized clinical trial comparing schema therapy and cognitive behavior therapy. Journal of affective disorders, 151(2), 500-505.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC. (2010). Current depression among adults-United States, 2006 and 2008. MMWR. Morbidity and mortality weekly report, 59(38), 1229.

Compton, W. M., Conway, K. P., Stinson, F. S., & Grant, B. F. (2006). Changes in the prevalence of major depression and comorbid substance use disorders in the United States between 1991–1992 and 2001–2002. American Journal of Psychiatry, 163(12), 2141-2147.

Cuijpers, P., Sijbrandij, M., Koole, S. L., Andersson, G., Beekman, A. T., & Reynolds, C. F. (2013). The efficacy of psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy in treating depressive and anxiety disorders: A metaanalysis of direct comparisons. World Psychiatry, 12(2), 137-148.

Honyashiki, M., Furukawa, T. A., Noma, H., Tanaka, S., Chen, P., Ichikawa, K., … & Caldwell, D. M. (2014). Specificity of CBT for depression: A contribution from multiple treatments meta-analyses. Cognitive therapy and research, 38(3), 249-260.

Pehrson, A. L., Leiser, S. C., Gulinello, M., Dale, E., Li, Y., Waller, J. A., & Sanchez, C. (2015). Treatment of cognitive dysfunction in major depressive disorder—a review of the preclinical evidence for efficacy of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, serotonin–norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors and the multimodal-acting antidepressant vortioxetine. European journal of pharmacology, 753, 19-31.

Robert Jaffe, Ph.D, LMFT
15720 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 520
Encino, CA 91436
Phone: 818-462-8383
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