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SSRI's and the Teen Brain

So you’re worried that your teen might be a little anxious or depressed.  You consult your doctor about this and are told that your kid needs an SSRI medication.  Because if you’re kid is depressed, you give an antidepressant medication, just like you would give a diabetic patient insulin.  Right?! 

Wrong.   There are many different causes for depression in kids, and unfortunately most of the reasons cannot be fixed with an SSRI.  And in fact, these medications can sometimes actually cause more harm than good.

Did you know that your kids brain doesn’t fully develop until he is 25 years old?  Yep. It’s true. 

The biggest concern is that SSRI’s have a Black Box Warning for use in adolescents:  “Increased risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior (suicidality) in children and adolescents treated with SSRI antidepressant medications.” 

What?!  You have a depressed kid, and the best answer conventional medicine can give you is a medication that might actually make them more suicidal? 

Call me a hypochondriac, but that scares me.  The other common side effects are not great either: increased anxiousness, agitation, insomnia, weight gain, sexual dysfunction, nausea, diarrhea, drowsiness, fatigue, dizziness, and even violent behavior!

SSRI’s also affect your sleep by decreasing REM sleep, an important part of the sleep cycle.  REM sleep is vital for a developing brain because it helps with brain plasticity: which in simpler terms is how our brain cells modify and make new connections. 

Science also tells us that our brains don’t fully develop until we are 25 years old.  This is an important fact to remember because that means our children’s brains are very susceptible to drugs under that age.

Another concern to consider is that bipolar disorder often starts out as depression in teenagers.  If you give an SSRI medication to someone that has bipolar disorder, it can induce a manic state. 

And to make matters worse, SSRI’s are not even very effective in kids or adolescents!  Most of the studies on these medications are done on the adult population, and the few studies that have been done on adolescents show that most antidepressants do not show any more improvement than placebo.

But the good news is, there are safe and natural treatments that actually work!

Homeopathic medicine might be the answer you’ve been looking for.  It is safe, effective, and stimulates true healing in the body and brain.  This means that your kid can start feeling like themselves again, without all the unwanted and negative side effects from medications.  Homeopathic medicine allows your child to not only heal, but it also decreases their susceptibility for having mental health challenges so that they don’t have to face a life long battle of struggles.  


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