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Would you give a 6 / 7 year old anti-depressants?

(107 Posts)
Piratejones Fri 06-Jun-14 17:39:19

I’ve never been on AD’s and neither has DH, I’m not completely sure how the effect you, but DH and myself were discussing our options with mini-pirates psychologist for his return to school in September and the big step up to year 2.

One of the things suggested was a 20 day course of Anti depressants to lead into the start of term, not because Mini pirate is depressed but to dull his emotions and help him control them. Even though he is academically in line with his age group, and is physically 6, he currently has the emotional control of a 2 year old, so it can bit like the incredible hulk at times.

It’s not really a route we want to go down right now, we are not dismissing it but we do feel at the moment there are other control techniques that may help (AKA far too early to medicate), but what are people’s opinions on this overall?

Orangeanddemons Fri 06-Jun-14 17:45:18

What a horrendous idea. My experience of the many many many ad's I've been on, is they all send you into an emotional tailspin in the first few weeks

Piratejones Fri 06-Jun-14 17:49:13

He's already in an emotional tailspin, and having CBT.

CailinDana Fri 06-Jun-14 17:49:25

I would be wary. I've taken ADs and they are very heavy duty. I would be worried about the effect they have on a child.

Has the psychologist given any explanation for his lack of emotional control?

Piratejones Fri 06-Jun-14 17:53:27

Has the psychologist given any explanation for his lack of emotional control?

Yes lots, but we are unsure what bits of his behaviour are because he was abused as a child and what is um... neurological related. Some of it may have been due to brain damage during seizures.

SylvaniansKeepGettingHoovered Fri 06-Jun-14 17:55:57

I would want as much information as I could get my hands on, about how they affect you, how much would be given to him, possible side effects, how he would cope after coming off them. I wouldn't be completely against it under some circumstances (I think I've read past posts of yours so I know he's been through difficulties) but I would wonder what happens after the 20 day dosage, would he feel worse and go through a withdrawal? I suppose would help him through the first 3 weeks of term, which is always the most unsettling period.

Gen35 Fri 06-Jun-14 17:56:55

Have you asked the dr to explain in detail what the research says about any problems ads can cause in this age group/side effects, and also do they know how many kids have taken them and for how many years? I'd mostly be concerned about the tiny sample size re effects on kids that young. I'd be tempted to see how bad it was first but of you're fairly sure he's doing to have a very bad time and this is your best option... Bottom line, do you trust the dr?

LastTango Fri 06-Jun-14 17:57:48

The side effect of the ones I've just come off (Citalopram) were horrendous. Perhaps he would be better on some ADHD medication (can't remember what it's called)?

CailinDana Fri 06-Jun-14 17:58:23

Poor thing, sounds like he's had a tough time.

softlysoftly Fri 06-Jun-14 18:00:01

Sounds a terrible idea to start, put up with the adjustment then stop again?

From what I've read, and experiences of people I know who've taken them: not a hope in hell and I'd be looking at every other possible option first. Absolute last resort.

PolterGoose Fri 06-Jun-14 18:03:24

Pirate this might be better asked on the SN Children board, several posters have children on the type of medication you are considering. It's a potentially contentious subject so not sure here is the best place to ask.

I'm a little concerned that the psychologist suggested it as they can't prescribe, for a child that age it would usually be a psychiatrist, also strange to suggest 20 day course when most SSRIs take time to get working.

xWurlyCurlyx Fri 06-Jun-14 18:03:58

Hello,

We have had to give our DS (9) ADs for other reasons. He has had absolutely no problems. It's obviously not ideal, but having a condition that requires that level of intervention isn't ideal either!

Good luck with the decision. It took us 2 years to get to a point where we felt we had no other options before we agreed. Ŵe now wish we had done it sooner as he has had a rough 2 years.

MirandaWest Fri 06-Jun-14 18:04:33

I can't see how a 20 day course of ADs would be helpful - took me about that long to stop having side effects from starting to take them.

NoTeaForMe Fri 06-Jun-14 18:04:42

I think LastTango is talking about Ritalin. Has that been mentioned to you Pirate ?

whynowblowwind Fri 06-Jun-14 18:06:01

No, I would not, although I won't take them myself either.

Piratejones Fri 06-Jun-14 18:06:26

The side effect of the ones I've just come off (Citalopram) were horrendous. Perhaps he would be better on some ADHD medication

Ritalin is a stimulant, certainly not the right medication for him.

do you trust the dr?

Up until now he has been very good.

I would want as much information as I could get my hands on, about how they affect you, how much would be given to him, possible side effects, how he would cope after coming off them. I wouldn't be completely against it under some circumstances (I think I've read past posts of yours so I know he's been through difficulties) but I would wonder what happens after the 20 day dosage, would he feel worse and go through a withdrawal?

Thank you, i will make a list of things to ask.
I know they are only prescribed in extreme cases because they lead to nightmares, So his psychologist visits will be increased while he's on them and he will need referal to a psychiatrist.

Piratejones Fri 06-Jun-14 18:14:22

Pirate this might be better asked on the SN Children board, several posters have children on the type of medication you are considering. It's a potentially contentious subject so not sure here is the best place to ask.

I wanted a lot of view point on this.

I'm a little concerned that the psychologist suggested it as they can't prescribe, for a child that age it would usually be a psychiatrist

Our doctor was present. And he would be referred for weekly checks with a phyciatrist.

I don't know about the 20 days thing, maybe it's a tester to see if he has any violent reactions?

Piratejones Fri 06-Jun-14 18:16:23

*Hello,

We have had to give our DS (9) ADs for other reasons. He has had absolutely no problems. It's obviously not ideal, but having a condition that requires that level of intervention isn't ideal either!*

So it became a long term solution for you?
Do you not worry and reliance on the medication?

Gen35 Fri 06-Jun-14 18:16:40

I do agree re sn board advice - I'd push for a quick psychiatrist referral for a 2nd opinion effectively, then you could have more confidence.

Shonajay Fri 06-Jun-14 18:19:45

Yes, if I felt secure in the people who were advising I did, and if there were a reason in his past that would indicate so. People have a knee jerk reaction, if its VERY closely monitored by medical doctors and psychiatrists, it can be a very good thing and prevent future intervention.

Gen35 Fri 06-Jun-14 18:19:49

I do agree re sn board advice - I'd push for a quick psychiatrist referral for a 2nd opinion effectively, then you could have more confidence.

Piratejones Fri 06-Jun-14 18:21:55

PolterGoose DH just told me the 20 day thing will probably be because he has had seizures in the past.

Imsuchamess Fri 06-Jun-14 18:23:59

I have to take some pretty heavy duty medication. Not just anti depressants but benzos anti psychs and mood stabiliser. My symptoms started in childhood but were not treated till I was a adult. I may have to consider putting my 8yo on similar medication. I will do it in a heartbeat.

However I don't think a psychologist should be recommending this to you as I feel it's outside their professional expertise. I also don't think they should be prescribed for short term problems because when you first take them you feel worse. They are hard to get off. I think you should be speaking to cahms about this not a psychologist.

ElkTheory Fri 06-Jun-14 18:29:52

No, I wouldn't. I would be concerned about side effects and the effect on a growing child. I'm generally a bit wary of anti-depressants even for adults, but I'd definitely avoid them for a young child.

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