Picot Statement:Using Physical Exercise to Prevent and Supplement Depression Treatment to Adolescents

Clinical Inquiry: Research Question

Mental illnesses among adolescents commonly present with mood and behavioral disorders. Depression among adolescents is one of the most common causes of illnesses and disability according to the world health organization (WHO, 2021). Suicide is one of the common causes of mortality among the young population aged between 10 and 19 years. These suicides are preventable through early identification and treatment of depression. Depression can also impair the individual’s psychological and physical life. Various explanatory theories have suggested the pathophysiology of depression among all age groups. Stressful life events, interpersonal models, behavioral models, cognitive models, self-control models, and sociocultural events are some of the concepts put forward to explain the natural history of depression (Bernaras et al., 2019). The use of physical exercise has been tried alone or in combination with other therapies to prevent and treat depression among at-risk populations and all age groups. The benefits of exercise in prevention alone or as supplemental therapy still remain unclear. In the third step of my evidence-based project, I develop a research question in the form of a PICOT question that explores the benefit of using physical exercise in preventing and treating depression among adolescents

PICOT Question

My PICOT question states “In adolescents (P), what is the effect of using physical exercise (I) on prevention and treatment of depression (O) compared with other nonpharmacological and pharmacological therapies (C) within three months (T)?” In this PICOT question physical exercise, either uses alone or as supplemental therapy is compared with other non-pharmacological and pharmacological therapies. From this clinical inquiry, keywords for literature search will be derived. The type, duration, and intensity of the physical exercise are not specified and all kinds of exercise will be evaluated.


Bernaras, E., Jaureguizar, J., & Garaigordobil, M. (2019). Child and adolescent depression: A review of theories, evaluation instruments, prevention programs, and treatments. Frontiers in Psychology10, 543. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00543

WHO. (2021, November 17). Adolescent mental health. Who.Int. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/adolescent-mental-health

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