Education for patients in children and teens
The diagnosis of children and adolescents can include a range of conditions, such as anxiety disorders, mood disorders, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). There are many treatment options available depending on what diagnosis is made and the severity of symptoms. There are two types of treatment options: pharmacological or nonpharmacological.
Medications are used to control the symptoms of the disorder. Antidepressant medications can be used, for example, to manage anxiety and depression in adolescents and children. ADHD symptoms are often treated with stimulant medication, like methylphenidate or amphetamines. Children and adolescents diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder may experience irritability or aggression.
Nonpharmacological therapies are those that don’t involve medication. You can choose from psychotherapy or behavioral therapy as well as complementary and alternate medicine. CBT, a cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT), is an effective and non-pharmacological option for adolescents and children with depression or anxiety. CBT is a non-pharmacological treatment that focuses on changing thought patterns and improving coping skills. A behavioral therapy program can be used to help ADHD children develop organizational, time and planning skills.
Non-pharmacological therapies include alternative and complementary medicine, including acupuncture, massage, and meditation. Children and teens may benefit from these treatments to manage anxiety and depression.
For children and teenagers with different diagnoses, both pharmacological or nonpharmacological therapies are possible. Individualized treatment plans must be tailored to the particular diagnosis and individual symptoms. Children and teens with mental disorders may benefit from a combination of nonpharmacological and pharmacological treatments.