Thursday, September 2, 2010

Medicating Young Children for Mood Disorders: Discussion

Child’s Ordeal Shows Risks of Psychosis Drugs for Young by Duff Wilson of the New York Times discusses the trend towards medicating young children has been disturbing to many of us in the Montessori community.

This article provides an insightful medical discussion that addresses many of the issues that we found troubling:

"But many doctors say prescribing them for younger and younger children may pose grave risks to development of both their fast-growing brains and their bodies. Doctors can legally prescribe them for off-label use, including in preschoolers, even though research has not shown them to be safe or effective for children. Boys are far more likely to be medicated than girls.

Dr. Ben Vitiello, chief of child and adolescent treatment and preventive research at the National Institute of Mental Health, says conditions in young children are extremely difficult to diagnose properly because of their emotional variability. “This is a recent phenomenon, in large part driven by the misperception that these agents are safe and well tolerated,” he said."

Well-worth reading and sharing.

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