Residential Treatment for Major Depression

Women have unique experiences with major depression, and they are more likely to struggle with it than men. Gender-specific treatment in a peaceful, residential setting provides effective care for women’s unique needs. Benefit from major depression treatment in small groups, working with women who have had similar experiences, experts in treating trauma, mental illness, and co-existing conditions, and a safe and tranquil environment. Helix can provide all of these and give you the tools you can take home to manage depression and enjoy a better life.

Major depression is a serious mental illness that has wide-ranging and long-lasting impacts on a person’s life. If you struggle with depression, it affects your relationships, your career, your physical health, and your happiness. Depression is chronic but it is also treatable.

Women experience depression differently from men and are twice as likely to receive a diagnosis of major depression. The approach to treatment, in order to be effective, must match an individual’s needs and is best when gender-specific. At Helix treatment plans are tailored to each client’s unique situation. The setting is tranquil, intimate, and safe, with just a handful of women learning and healing together at a time.

Major Depression Treatment at Helix

Major depression generally causes symptoms like persistent sadness and hopelessness, loss of interest in life, fatigue, changes in sleeping and eating habits, and difficulty thinking or concentrating. These symptoms last for two weeks or more and make functioning normally difficult or impossible.

Treatment for depression aims to help you manage these symptoms and take steps to reduce their occurrence. You cannot be cured of depression, but you can learn successful strategies to cope and reduce the severity and frequency of the episodes.

At Helix, treatment is focused on each individual client’s unique experiences. Many women have traumatic pasts that contribute to or trigger depression. Comprehensive care includes strategies that address any trauma as well as co-occurring mental health conditions.

In general, depression treatment is best with a combination of therapies with medications. Antidepressant medications are not a cure or even a good single-line treatment. They can, however, provide symptom relief and management. It may take several weeks to find the right medication.

Therapy is a necessary part of effective depression treatment. Different types of therapy can help you face and process traumatic experiences, adjust to difficult life changes, find and manage the triggers that lead to depression episodes, and practice healthy coping strategies.

Why Choose Helix Treatment Centers for Major Depression Treatment?

Helix offers a unique treatment experience for major depression. You’ll be housed with just a few other women in a tranquil setting where you can work both independently on healing and together with others who may have similar experiences.

Not only do women often express their depression symptoms differently from men, but they have unique triggers. For instance, women are more vulnerable to depression related to pregnancy and giving birth, being a new mother, menopause, and premenstrual syndrome.

There is also evidence that women are more likely to ruminate over stressful situations and to struggle with anxiety, which can lead to more symptoms of depression.

At Helix, all of these unique needs become the focus of gender-specific treatment. Just some of the types of treatment you’ll benefit from at Helix include:

Somatic Experiencing

Somatic experiencing is an integrative therapy that recognizes how trauma and other issues are expressed both physically and psychologically. It has been proven in studies to be effective for treating PTSD but can also benefit women struggling with a range of painful memories and mental illnesses. By focusing on physical sensations, you will learn how to manage and process trauma.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

CBT will help you become more aware of the negative and inaccurate thoughts and emotions that prevent you from healing. A trained therapist will show you strategies for changing problematic thinking so that you can react more positively to difficult situations, painful memories, and other issues.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

EMDR is used to manage and process traumatic experiences. It is a way of helping the brain heal and reframe trauma. In EMDR, you will be guided to remember your trauma in a safe setting and with a compassionate therapist. Using eye movements, you will begin to remove the mental blocks that have prevented you from healing from those experiences.


Mindfulness involves focusing on the present moment: breathing, physical sensations, thoughts and emotions, and the world around you. It can take the form of therapy but also meditation, deep breathing, yoga, and other practices you can use later to calm and center yourself.

Relational Psychotherapy

Healthy, balanced relationships are essential for good mental health. Many women come to treatment with relationship difficulties underlying trauma and mental illness. Relational psychotherapy can be one-on-one or with a loved one. It will help you learn and change your negative patterns in relating to other people, how to communicate effectively, and how to enjoy healthier, mutually beneficial relationships.

In addition to these primary treatment modalities, Helix also offers an extensive list of supplementary treatments. These can be used as needed to provide each resident with a unique, individualized experience for healing and wellness:

  • Family therapy
  • Grief counseling
  • DBT skills
  • Relapse prevention
  • Trauma-sensitive yoga
  • Nutritional evaluation
  • Equine-assisted therapy
  • Art therapy
  • Music therapy
  • Adventure therapy
  • Hypnotherapy
  • Safe and sound protocol
  • Community peer support groups

Begin Your Recovery Journey.


What to Expect the First Day

The first day of treatment can be scary, but the caring staff at Helix will walk you through the process and help you get settled in. One of the first things you’ll do is undergo a thorough assessment. This is where you will share your symptoms and any treatment history or past experiences that are relevant. It will help the staff develop a personalized, effective treatment plan.

The intake assessment can be done in advance so that your care plan is ready to go when you start your first day here. On day one, you’ll go through some paperwork and get a tour of the facilities. You will also have a chance to settle into your room and to meet the other women in the residence. Take some time to explore, especially the beautiful and tranquil grounds outdoors.

By day two you will have met your psychiatrist so that you can go through a more in-depth assessment. You will get a diagnosis and a chance to provide some input for your treatment plan. Throughout your stay here the staff will be available 24 hours a day to help you feel safe and to manage any issues that arise.

Your Helix Treatment Centers Experience

The Helix experience is, above all, one that is peaceful and safe. This is a sanctuary where you can expect to benefit from the healing environment. The small, private, gender-specific residence is conducive to relaxation, to focusing on your wellness, and to building the skills and knowledge you’ll take back home with you to live a better life.

Every day in treatment is different, but you can expect to start each day with a healthy meal. There will be time for quiet reflection and one-on-one therapy, including any specialized therapies, such as for trauma. After lunch is generally time for group therapies, in which you’ll share with and learn from other women.

Lasting Change for a Better Life

For many women struggling with depression, residential treatment is the best option. Several weeks in a safe, caring community can help you effect more lasting change. Residential care is especially useful for anyone with depression who has tried other treatments with little success, has more than one mental health condition, has a history of suicide attempts or self-harm, or just has severe symptoms.

The ultimate goal of treatment is to help you live a better life. What you can achieve in a residential setting limited to women is the ability to manage your own mental health and make changes to improve all aspects of your life. Our clients go home from treatment prepared to do just that, to make lasting, positive changes.