Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Medicating Our Children?




It's Wednesday...already half way through the first week of the year...
Hope you haven't wavered off your goals yet. 
Have you noticed there are more people at the gym recently?

Today i wanted to put out the question about
whether, as a nation, we are over-medicating our children?
Recently, i heard there was a shortage of Adderall, a medication which treats attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).  Apparently, the manufacturers continue to struggle to get enough active ingredients to make the climbs. There are concerns among professionals that the shortages will continue into 2012.

Which of course is unfortunate because there are many children (and adults)
who will be without medication to help them focus on their day to day activities.
 I work with children who are heavily medicated so of course this grabbed my attention, however,
the question for debate, is whether we should be medicating our children in the first place anyway?



There are MANY children who benefit from taking medication however the impact of children being medicated cannot be a positive aspect for their health long term.
 I heard of one father whose daughter had ADHD however instead of medicating her, he decided to work with her and engage her in activities that would support his daughter do well daily.
For example, he allowed her thirty minutes to run around before school started
so she could concentrate better at school.
And of course, there are the little kids, who regardless of how much running around they do, they cannot sit still in class unless they have taken their medication in the morning.

I know school administrators want and need children who are going to
be compliant and follow direction in order to actually educate them.
 I know parents need their children to function well on a daily basis.
 I also know manufacturers need to make medication so that they can make money.

My opinion..i am a little biased...



Question of the Day
Where do you stand on medicating our children?
Do you believe it's necessary and if so why?




29 comments:

Rod and Alex - aka: "Rolex" said...

This is a difficult one for me. It seems like these medications have become extremely popular in the past years. I believe there is a possibility that children are being overly medicated for ADHD.
However, a good friend of mine has four children and one of her boys has ADD. He struggles, even with the medication. But she swears on the meds. I definitely trust her judgement.
I know I would certainly be cautious of giving my child a medication long-term.
I may have to check out "A Medicated Child" to learn a little more!

Lauren Taddeo said...

While I do believe medication is necessary for dealing with certain disorders in children, it seems that the monitoring of this needs to be better. I don't believe medication is the be all and end all of helping children with mental illness. I also believe that believe that along with other treatments such as counselling, parental education and other holistic approaches medication can be very beneficial. It's a tough issue. I'm glad you talked about it though! It's good to have these discussions.

Evelien said...

I think there are a lot of side effects too... My little sister gets VERY depressed if she takes the meds for a long time! To the point where it gets dangerous. When she stops with the meds, bang, she's back to her happy self!
And there's also some problems with eating, sleeping, etc...

Rocker Chic said...

Mrs. P

I dont have kids, however, I do have nieces. I work in healthcare and I do believe that other methods of therapy should be applied before a prescription is written.

I saw a topic similar to this on the news. The doctor was only spending five minutes with his patients which were mainly children before writing a prescription.

I do believe medicine do help sone children but I don't think every child should be medicated. Some issues can be fixed with alternatives methods.

~Style Bot~ said...

I do not have children myself, but I personally do not like taking medication myself. I hate the way it makes ME feel. I absolutely would not want my child to be subjected to that kind of torture. However, I am sure that in some cases, it is the best solution to regulate the child's situation. It is definitely a toughy.

http://khalilahskloset.blogspot.com/

With Class and Sass,
~Khalilah~

Carlie said...

I think it is needed for some kids, but others don't need it at all. I am so grateful for medicines though. There was a special on 20/20 about a month or 2ago that was about over-medicating children in the foster care system. It was so sad!

Ms. Geek Goddess said...

I think in terms of mental disorders in children and in adults that medication should kind of be a last resort. I don't have children, but it does seem like nowadays people are so prone to want to pop a pill for everything. I agree with Lauren to an extent. If it is temporary and there are other means to help slowly take the child off of the meds then cool, but I just feel like medicine has become sort of a crutch in our society. I just wish that people would try harder to exercise other methods first.

Teresha@Marlie and Me said...

I don't know where to start. I think in some cases medication is necessary, but I do believe too many children are being misdiagnosed when other issues like diet, unbalanced hormones or toxins could be the real culprits for inattention. If my child's school asked me to put her on medication I would seek a second and third opinion. Then, I would try an alternative remedy first. Drugs would be the last resort. Pharmaceutical companies make way too much money to be interested in whether we are being overmedicated. They want it that way!

Sam {fitnessfoodandfaith.blogspot.com} said...

an interesting thing to think about. i think we do push medication too quickly out of laziness sometimes.

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

That last quote is a beautiful one! Like you mentioned, I think medication should be assessed on a case by case basis because different treatments are effective for different people. But the main thing is that we address this through a combination of treatments to help people with ADHD!

xoxo,
Chic 'n Cheap Living

Sunny said...

I believe it's absolutely necessary in some situations, but it seems like ADHD is a catchall diagnosis that is handed out to children who may not be. Sometimes children are just hyper. My cousin's teacher tried to suggest that she was ADHD but she's not. she just needed to find another way to handle her.

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird said...

I feel like a lot of people are very quick to medicate these days. I understand if it is necessary but sometimes I feel like people want to just jump into it as a way to explain away a child that is simply hyper.

Desiray said...

in some situations the child needs medicine but I use to work in thepharmaceutical business and what I have seen is most doctors medicate children who really don't need to be. There are other programs for children who are so active and many adults would rather medicate then deal with the issue. It's a growing issue and needs to be look at carefully.

Desiray said...

And most children with Adhd don't always need the medicine.

Purposely at Home said...

hey girl! i tagged you on my blog in a fun questionnaire thingy. ;) hope you can participate! have a blessed week! :)

xo
purposelyathome.blogspot.com

Optimistic Mom said...

I really think we need to take more time to thoroughly assess children first before we go to medication. Some need it some don't, there isn't one mold for every child.

Help! Mama Remote... said...

Great topic. I'm sure there are cases when the child is over medicated and cases when its needed and done properly. It would be great if there was a balance. However, since I'm not dealing with this with my children, i'll make.sure not to judge the parents. This is a tough one.

THE ALTERNATIVE WIFE said...

It's so hard to say and such a touchy topic but overall I think there needs to be a little more tightening of the Rx pad for children and adults alike. Totally needs to be looked at on an individual basis though.

MrsH said...

Hubs and I recently watched a special about this on 60minutes or was it Dateline? Anyway its definitely a touchy subject with many parents but I do tend to think that for the most part today's society is over-medicated and not just kids.

toi said...

I agree that our modern society is leaving too much in the hands of medicine and not everyone needs it, especially when it comes to children.

OurLifeUnrehearsed said...

This is very difficult for me as I work in social services and read daily the files of the children on tons of medicines. I believe alot of the state adjudicated children are overly medicated because they are given a health screening as soon as they are removed from their abusive homes when they are also undergoing one of the most traumatic times in their lives. I would seem overly anxious and difficult to manage also if life as I knew it is now something different and with different unfamiliar faces. I do believe that some children need the help of medicine but in today's society it is soo much easier to write a prescription and make money rather than working with individuals with therapy and counseling. Personally, I would be more than cautious to give my child a medication long term unless her health tremendously required the use of such aid.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Tiffany said...

This is so interesting. I don't know enough on the subject to speak with any type of authority. I tend to think we are probably over medicating, but I don't have a lot of first hand knowledge. A very interesting debate!

Married...with a Pup said...

Wow...of course another great question coming from Team Pancakes =)! Unfortunately, I also have a biased opinion on this subject. Both my Mom and Step-Dad work for a school system and they are about the last ones left (it seems) that advocate for the child and not to label every child with some disease that needs medication.

Bravoe Runway said...

I think we're a society as a whole that just wants a medication for everything.

Monique said...

great question. i'm a natural girl through and through. when i have my own children medication will be second to natural remedies. i would use the guidance of a holistic doctor. as a country, yes children are over medicated and it's mainly to profit pharmaceutical companies. i don't believe it's mostly in the interest of the child. i've treated young children with adhd without meds.

Alida said...

I think that too many kids are being misdiagnosed to begin with. Not every active child is ADHD.

Vanisha @ Vanisha's Life In...Australia said...

We don't have children yet, but you've raised so many issues that must be talked about and discussed further. I've heard some truly devastating stories, and in small places like Fiji as well.

Emily w/Amazing Grapes said...

This is a tough question. I've heard a boy who absolutely needed this med and when he was on it was a great kid, but his parents decided to take him off and he was the worst kid after that.
But I do believe meds are shoved into parents hands as the 'quick fix'. Even into adults hands. People think meds will solve all their problems and when the doc doesn't want to give them something its almost like the person demands a drug, so the dr. just automatically gives it to us even when we don't need it.

I digress... haha
Emily at Amazing Grapes

Kathy said...

i find that some parents and even some doctors are too ready to jump to the ADD/ADHD conclusion when their young kids can't sit still or are very active. even parents of 2-4YO toddlers wonder why their kids are always running around... and i almost want to say: because they're toddlers; their attention span is >thisbig<. i also don't trust doctors too much because many of them are affiliated with drug manufacturers and will push the drugs onto their patients. i've even known parents who give their kids sleep aids, melatonin or benadryl to get their kids to sleep when all they really need to do is implement a bedtime routine/bedtime rules and be firm with them.

i don't believe in medicating kids until they're fully and properly diagnosed and even then, i'd rather research a more holistic approach then man-made drugs. i'm not against medicine or anything but i prefer natural remedies. when i had my carpal tunnel (it was so bad that i could barely move my right arm and it also gave me tennis elbow!), every doctor recommended surgery and steroid injections but when i went to see an acupuncturist, she cured me within 4 treatments; no meds; just needles in certain points of my body to unblock whatever was blocking my "energy". i was never a believer of holistic medicine until my carpal was cured. it hasn't come back since.

i have a lot to say about this but then this comment would be longer than it already is! sorry about that :\