Monday, March 20, 2006

Psychiatric meds for kids

Soaring numbers of U.S. children are being prescribed anti-psychotic drugs -- in many cases, for attention deficit disorder or other behavioral problems for which these medications have not been proven to work, a study found.

The annual number of children prescribed anti-psychotic drugs jumped fivefold from 1995 to 2002, to an estimated 2.5 million, the study said. That is an increase from 8.6 out of every 1,000 children in the mid-1990s to nearly 40 out of 1,000.

But more than half of the prescriptions were for attention deficit and other non-psychotic conditions, the researchers said.

The findings are worrisome "because it looks like these medications are being used for large numbers of children in a setting where we don't know if they work," said lead author Dr. William Cooper, a pediatrician at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital. (Indy Star)

If your daughter's pediatrician wants to start her on psychiatric meds, do your duty as a parent and talk to the doctor. Ask questions. Demand answers. If you're not comfortable with what the doctor is telling you, seek other medical advice.

Don't just accept without question whatever the doctor says - DEMAND to be informed and involved.


  1. You need to check that for any child, but more especially sons. A lot of boy's behavior that's merely a bit squirrelly gets morphed into ADD when a teacher gets into the mix. It's easier to drug kids than address their underlying problems that may well be more due to emotions than chemical imballances.

  2. Mark: It is true that the majority of research of ADD has been conducted on males, but an increasing number of females have been identified as having ADD. I wrote about discussing daughters' symptoms because (1) of that increasing number among females and (2) my kids are both girls.

    BTW, are you my visitor from Auburn, MI?

  3. Close, Midland. Our local cable provider does have its regional offices between Bay City and Auburn (I'm not sure of its mailing address), so it might show up with an Auburn tag.