Cautions on Psychiatric Medication in Children

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Claudia M. Gold, MD, is a behavioral pediatrician who writes for the Boston Globe. She offers some excellent thoughts on the topic of psychiatric medication and children:

“In the last chapter of my new book Keeping Your Child in Mind: Overcoming Defiance, Tantrums, and Other Everyday Behavior Problems by Seeing the World through Your Child’s Eyes I discuss the problems associated with the exponential rise in prescribing of psychiatric medication for children. While I am not against medication per se, I have a number of concerns about what I consider to be an over-reliance on medication to treat complex problems. Not only are there side effects and unknown effects on the developing brain, but medication is often the focus of treatment to the exclusion of important family issues. Significant events in a child’s life may go unaddressed. Usually a child does not have an opportunity to talk about what it means to him to be taking a pill to manage his behavior.”

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