The World of the Autistic Child: Understanding and Treating Autistic Spectrum Disorders

By Bryna Siegel | Go to book overview

Long-Term Management of Medication

All children who receive psychoactive medications should have ongoing medical management. Depending on the medication, this will mean different types of tests at different intervals. It is very important that any doctor who prescribes medications have access to all other information on the child's health status, and that the child never receive medications from different doctors at the same time without each doctor knowing what the others are doing. This is true even if one of the doctors is administering homeopathic treatments like megavitamins. Medications can interact with one another in specific ways to produce side effects that might not be seen with either medication alone. The doctor who prescribes a psychoactive medication definitely needs to know if the child is taking medicines for other physical ailments, as not all medications mix safely with one another.


Chapter Summary

In this chapter, we have discussed the use of psychoactive medications for children with autism and PDD. In deciding to use medications, a careful evaluation of the child's behaviors both at home and in the classroom needs to be made, and behavioral methods of changing behavior should usually be tried first. In addition to special education and medication, some parents and teachers also reach out for new treatments and apparent cures for autism that emerge from outside the mainstream of special education or medical practice. In the next chapter, we talk about some of these and how to assess their efficacy.

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