I am often in awe of what is possible with modern medicine.
I am also concerned about how it is misused. There is much talk and debate about taking medication in excess. As a parent, deciding if your small being should start taking medication is a big decision.
The first things you want to consider are who the advice is coming from and whether you have gotten a second opinion. How do their thoughts reflect what you know about your small being and what you feel in your gut? What other options have you considered? Psychiatric medications are not always the right or only answer. (Tweet)
My friend found out how important this was in a recent visit to a medical professional. I have permission to share her experience here:
My friend—let’s call her Ann—was feeling a bit tired and depressed this winter. She made an appointment with her general practitioner's office.
In the past her mood became low when her Vitamin D level was low. She wondered if it was the same situation this time around.
She met with a nurse practitioner in the general practitioner's office and explained what had been going on and mentioned her experience with low Vitamin D levels.
The first thing the nurse practitioner said was, "How about some meds?"
Ann, taken slightly aback as this being the first suggestion, asked that instead they investigate the potential Vitamin D issue. The NP looked doubtful.
"How about some meds?"
Ann left the office with a blood test order for Vitamin D.
The results came in the next week. The NP sent a message on the practice messaging system. To paraphrase: "Your levels are low-ish, but how about I tell you about some meds that won't affect your personality." Ann also noticed that although she met the NP for 10 minutes, she put a depression diagnosis on Ann's chart.
Ann stood firm: "Low is too low, please prescribe me high-dose Vitamin D as an alternative, and please remove the diagnosis that you had no basis to include!"
Finally, Ann got a prescription for Vitamin D and after three weeks she felt much better. There was clearly no need for psychiatric medication nor a diagnosis of depression, just some vitamins.
Imagine if she hadn't stood firm in what she knew to be true about herself. Imagine if she had taken the medical professional's opinions to heart. She would be taking medication with side affects for no reason.
The nurse practitioner might have been following protocol and most likely had the best intentions, but I am sure this is not the first time that medication was prescribed to a patient too quickly, nor will it be the last.
As you speak to medical professionals I suggest that you question why they are not suggesting a non-medication approach first. Consider getting a second opinion, perhaps from someone with a different background or style. There are many ways to solve behavior problems and you want as much information as possible to make a decision.
Feedback? Thoughts? Comments? Leave 'um below or email me at: Info@BehaviorAndBeyond.net.
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