Less use of anti-depressants, more teen suicide

When the FDA warned against use of antidepressants in 2004, doctors wrote fewer prescriptions. The teen suicide rate, which had been falling, rose significantly in 2004 and 2005. In 2007, the FDA updated the warning to say that “depression and certain other serious psychiatric disorders are themselves the most important causes of suicide.” Surprise!

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  1. Although it’s important to find just the right medication, it is necessary for some kids and adults to take medication in order to function properly. It is sad that a lot of mental problems are overlooked until it is too late.

  2. As far as I’m concerned adolescence is a mental disorder. On the plus side it’s not permanent.

  3. The people who claim that anti-depressants somehow increase the likelyhood of suicide are morons. They just don’t seem to understand that people who need the medication are more likely to commit suicide in the first place.

  4. andyo

    It is more complex than that. There is precious little research on the effects of drugs on children. A lot of the medication is prescribed outside of the areas where they have been tested and found to be effective (generally on adults). I don’t disagree regarding the necessity of the medication. It’s just that frequently there is so little information available to either prescribing physicians or parents. Even with an adult population there is a lot of trial and error to finding the right meds or combination of meds.

    In my own family’s experience, I would say that we were very lucky to have protective resources available throughout the process of arriving at a diagnosis and appropriate medication–even though it meant a residential placement for a time. What was not good was the length of time in residential treatment in which no one asked whether the medication was exacerbating, rather than easing, the symptoms.