Concerns over staggering numbers of children prescribed antidepressants

drugs

There’s a real concern over the staggering numbers of children prescribed antidepressants in the UK as use of the drug continues to increase.

It’s understood that the number of children prescribed antidepressants is now at more than 70,000. Of this figure, some 2,000 are understood to be children of primary school age.

We’re already in an era where doctors are thought to be overprescribing medication. A great deal of this has been linked to funding constraints. The result is that more people are using medication when alternative treatment could help them more. On top of that, some people are becoming addicted to medication. In the case of children, what about the long-term effects of drug use as well?

Increasing numbers of children prescribed antidepressants must be addressed

We must address – and quickly – the increasing numbers of children prescribed antidepressants. Experts are already warning that there could be long-term adverse effects on the developing brains of minors taking this kind of medication. In reality, we may not know the full effects until many years down the line.

By then, it may well be too late to do anything about it.

Millions of Brits are understood to be on antidepressant medication. The trend of this now increasing in children need to be addressed quickly.

Do they even work for children?

Prior research has suggested that children prescribed antidepressants are not getting any value from the medication at all. This could put children in danger where their mental health problems are not being treated or resolved by the medication they’re being put on.

Other experts have suggested that antidepressants for children are only useful for short-term help until proper treatment can be utilised.

 Alternatives to children prescribed antidepressants

There are alternatives available to children prescribed antidepressants as a course of treatment. Counselling and other talking therapies is said to remain the most effective solution for anyone suffering with mental health problems.

It’s also fair to say that we should try and avoid the overuse of drugs anyway.

Mental health services are under huge strain at the moment, and a lot of the pressure comes from a lack of funding. More must be done to safeguard mental health services and avoid situations where millions of reliant on drugs to cope with their problems.

IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.

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