Too Young to Know

By: Tara Hettinger
By: Tara Hettinger

"He had talked about killing his self. The doctor was like well, that is a side effect that can happen. I was like why didn't you tell me this before?" questioned Sharon Logsdon whose teenage son is on psychiatric medication.

"I didn't know of any kind of side effects and still don't know of any of them. It's been this long and I still haven't been told of anything other than it might make him sleepy for a while this has been three years. When does the sleepiness wear off?" questioned Debbie Abney, mother of a six-year-old son on psychiatric medication.

Those side effects are making these parents want to take their children off the medication.

"Just because you go to a doctor and they suggest a medication doesn't mean you have to take it," said Doctor Chris Smith.

There are alternatives.

The Attention Deficit Disorder organization offers these tips: to simplify your life, reduce stressors, improve nutrition, get plenty of sleep and daily exercise.

Also, talk to your doctor to find out what is best for your child.

"I ask that all the time. When do you think he can be off this medicine? Well, he may never be off of it, or maybe he'll grow out of it," said Logsdon.

"There's been no further testing since he was three years old to see if he could be off of it nothing... Nothing said that he's improved or gotten worse. It's totally based on if the teacher is saying he can sit still or not," said Abney.

One area pharmacist says parents may also be the key to helping the problem.

"The doctors are trying as best as they can to see to solve the problems but I think the parents needs to get more involved with their children," said pharmacist Dale Clark.

"I don't mind being a stay at home mom putting in the extra effort for him to learn the things he needs to learn. I rather do it that way than have the medicine in him," said Abney.

Because the side effects already showing up now are causing these parents to regret the treatment all together.

"I wouldn't have taken it. I regret taking it any of it," said Abney.

"I think he's a 15-year-old boy who needs to be a boy. People expect too much out of children today. People need to just let them be kids," said Logsdon.

After being interview for this story Debbie Abney took her six-year-old son in for a second opinion.

That doctor said the child did not have ADD and did not need the medication.

He is being gradually taken off the medication now.

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