Emotion detectives may help families

A new programme designed to help families better understand their emotions and strive for a happier life could be effective in combating depression in young people. This is the suggestion of a new study from the University of Miami - a private research university - which showed emotion detectives treatment protocol (EDTP) can reduce the severity of the condition.

Jill Ehrenreich-May, Assistant Professor of Psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences at the learning institute, said EDTP's potential - which can also be used to tackle anxiety - is very exciting for practitioners.

Ms Ehrenreich stated: "Not only could the protocol better address the needs of youth with commonly co-occurring disorders and symptoms, it may also provide additional benefits to mental health professionals."

She added EDTP could provide a more unified approach to treatment for depression and anxiety, which in-turn should lead to clinicians and patients benefitting from more affordable and efficient care.

Dr Angharad Rudkin, a member of the British Psychological Society’s Division of Clinical Psychology, commented: "This study contributes to growing evidence around the importance of teaching children and their families about their feelings.

"Being more aware of emotions and how to communicate about them within the family will set children and their parents up for more positive relationships and more manageable moods."