Breathing Space for Kids - Breathing Space Blog
“Mmore than 17 million children worldwide have been prescribed psychiatric drugs so dangerous that medicine regulatory agencies in Europe, Australia and the United States have issued warnings that antidepressants, for example, can cause suicide and hostility in children and adolescents. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has also issued a warning that stimulant drugs, such as Ritalin and Concerta can cause suicidal as well as violent, aggressive and psychotic behavior, and that these same drugs can cause heart attacks, stroke and sudden death.”
* Of these 17 million, more than 10 million children are in the United States, being prescribed addictive stimulants, antidepressants and other psychotropic (mind-altering) drugs for educational and behavioral problems.
* Children 5 years old and younger are the fastest-growing segment of the non-adult population prescribed antidepressants in the U.S. Children as young as 4 have attempted suicide while influenced by such drugs and 5 year-olds have committed suicide. Between 1995 and 1999, antidepressant use increased 580% in the under 6 population and 151% in the 7-12 age group. In 2004, the FDA ordered that a “black box” label be placed on antidepressants warning that they can cause suicide in children and adolescents.
* Stimulants are mostly prescribed for “Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder” (ADHD) and other childhood “disorders” and are “Schedule II” drugs, meaning they have the same potential for abuse as morphine, opium and cocaine. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) reports that studies show that Ritalin is more potent than cocaine and effects the brain in the same way as cocaine does.
* A recent U.S. report found that 10% of teens abuse Ritalin and another stimulant drug, Adderall. Eight out of 13 school shooters in the U.S. were taking antidepressants or stimulants at the time of the crime. Often children, affected by these drugs, have been institutionalized where they have been forcefully restrained—tragically, dozens have died during this violent procedure.
“Parents are not informed about all the potential risks to their child when they agree to a psychiatric drug prescription. They are not informed that the diagnoses for which they are prescribed are unlike medical diseases. There is no physical test—blood or urine test, “chemical imbalance” test or x-ray or brain scan—that can determine the physical existence or cause of the "mental disorder." Millions of children are prescribed these drugs when they have simply never been taught to read or may be suffering from allergies, lead poisoning or other environmental toxic effects.”