Medication is increasingly being prescribed to children and adolescents to treat behavioral or mood problems. Medication for an emotional or behavioral problem can be helpful; there is research showing that for children and adolescents, psychological interventions may be more effective. Sometimes medication is necessary—especially if the child or adolescent is exhibiting extremely aggressive or dangerous behavior or is severely moody.
With any medication there are risks, such as side effects and adverse reactions, as well as benefits. Children’s and adolescents’ brains and bodies continue developing until around the age of 26. The safety of psychotropic medications cannot be inferred from adult-use data. Research has yet to comprehensively examine the effectiveness and long-term side effects of many of these drugs on children and adolescents.
To prepare for the Discussion:
Review Chapter 9 of the textbook.
Review the media pieces listed in the Learning Resources.
Review the expectations in the Discussion Rubric.
Consider the following scenario:
Tonya is a 10-year-old adolescent whose parents have come to you because of a recent diagnosis of ADHD by Tonya’s pediatrician. Tonya’s parents do not understand how a person is diagnosed with AHDH. They have heard that all ADHD medications are stimulant based and have a high risk for creating substance dependence.
Tonya appears motivated to please her parents and teacher but is easily distracted and disengaged. She does not have a history of abusing medications; all medications would be dispensed by Tonya’s mother.
Write out a mini script showing what you, Tonya’s counselor, would say to her parents.
By Day 3
Respond to the following prompts using your mini script:
Provide two potential questions you might ask about Tonya’s diagnosis.
Explain the role of behavioral counseling alongside a diagnosis of ADHD.
Explain the potential short-term and long-term consequences of not treating ADHD.
Include an empathetic reflection of Tonya’s parents.
Be sure to support your postings and responses with specific references to the Learning Resources.
Sinacola, R. S., Peters-Strickland, T.,
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