Aussie kids have begun using powerful antipsychotic, antidepressant
medications, a study shows.
Researchers at the University of Sydney studied the prescription patterns of psychiatric medications for kids and teenagers from 2009 to 2012.
The number of kids in the age group of 10-14 prescribed antidepressants soared by more than a third, whereas prescriptions for anti-psychotic medications increased by almost 50 per cent.
The issue is of great concern to the health experts since most of these medications have not been tested on children and are likely to have serious implications for their health.
Emily Karanges from the University's School of Psychology claims that antidepressants and anti-psychotic medications can have serious side effects, such as weight gain, obesity and diabetes, especially on children.
"These are very strong drugs and children and adolescents tend to be more susceptible to side effects from these drugs runs," Dr Karanges said.
The reason for this surge is, in part, due to agitation on the part of the patient or their parent or anxiety of the doctor who wants a quick result.
Dr. Karanges added that medication is seen as the primary solution often but sadly very rarely are they combined with other treatment modalities.
He said that for treatment of depression, talk therapy, exercise and meditation techniques work fine.
He also added a word of caution that these treatment methods would take a longer time to bring about the desired result.