Oliver Harper

Executive Director,

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What is the validity of using psychotropic medications on young children when there is no long term benefit and the risk outweigh the gains.

The psychiatric and pharmaceutical industry have targeted children with proposed remedies for altering their behaviors and it has been adopted into the mainstream of our culture where the pace of technology has impacted our capacity to engage, parent or expend the necessary time that our family needs to address divergent or disruptive behaviors whenever it surfaces. Our quick fix modas operandi need a parenting slow cook disposition so that our children can benefit from our wisdom, mindfulness and capacity to care and love at home. It is unethical for us to continue chemically altering the biochemistry of our children because we do have the time to give them. It is a societal problem of labeling that facilitates pill pushing triggers from the medical establishment that does not benefit the child. Children in foster care are often major victims in that they are often overmedicated with higher dosages than the general public. I need for each of us to make a stand to address this issue. If you have a child that is benefiting please let me know and what precipitated the need for medication in the first place. Children are active agents with diverse responses and behaviors who are exposed to nutritional elements that contribute to their disruptions and this may not have any thing to do with mental health labels that is often pathologized with treatment regimens that exacerbate the underlying condition. Help me raise awareness and advocate for the safety of children who often do not need the medication when placed in the right atmosphere that is relational and loving. Thanks

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    Dec 21 2011: Remember the Columbine High School shootings more than a decade ago? The shooters were on SSRI antidepressant drugs, which can cause adolescents to dissociate from reality and commit violent acts against others.

    Now a court judge in Canada has ruled that SSRI drugs can, indeed, cause children and teens to mindlessly commit acts of violence against others:
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      Dec 21 2011: The side effects of medications are often been more debilitating than the problems they are assigne to address. Chemically altering one's mind as a way of treating a problem never guarantees intended positive results. Once again its a Russian roulette approach at the expense of the patient. What the drug is prescribed to do in children has no evidential proof that it works, hence the tendency to experiment with multiple drugs creating more internal biochemical chaos
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    Dec 8 2011: Drugs are not routinely tested on children and so no drug can be considered actually safe. In the case of psychotropic drugs- there is no testing that I am aware of in such young populations and so no assurance that harm will not be done. I think medical professionals are trying to help but they are still in the dark ages when it come to childhood mental illnesses.
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      Dec 16 2011: I agree, it is unethical to test drugs on children. Then the questions are why then are millions of children targeted for usage. In particular children in foster care who are often placed on complex regimens at higher dosages. It appears apathetic that as a society we allow professionals due to their license the privilege of making snap decisions about the welfare of children. Are they doing more harm than good in the long run given the withdrawals, metabolic complications and excessive weight gain that impacts their social well being in a negative way. We need more advocacy and we need adults to build better relations with children and avoid trying to fix them chemically. The Russian roulette approach needs to be addressed with Federal and state mandates and regulations with a plan to eliminate it alltogether.