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Rise in anti-depressants prescriptions for children

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The reported rise of anti-depressants prescriptions for children could be a cause for concern, particularly when the use of anti-depressants is not generally recommended by the NHS for under 18’s.

Recent figures reportedly show over 1,500 children under the age of 5 were prescribed anti-depressants, with the numbers reaching over 91,000 for 16-year olds.

Any recent reported rise in anti-depressants prescriptions for children could be partially attributed to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in March. Many people, children included, have struggled to receive professional mental health services as the waiting times are so long. With the NHS staff under further pressure to cope during the pandemic, many surgeries and treatments have seen pauses and delays as resources are directed elsewhere.

Anti-depressants prescriptions for children

A breakdown of the 1,572 number for under 5’s statistic shows that 703 of those prescriptions were for children aged one, 188 for children aged two, 285 for those aged three, 381 for those aged four, and 718 prescriptions children aged five.

Anti-depressants prescriptions for children only increased with age, according to the figures. At age 11, the figures rose to an astonishing 6,000 and, at the age of 16, 91,000 prescriptions are understood to have been issued.

There have been concerns in the past over the effects of anti-depressants on children, including fears that use of the drug could stunt brain development or cause further harm to mental health.

Side-effects of the use of anti-depressants

Practically all mediation comes with side-effects, which is why its use should always be carefully considered.

Recent research into anti-depressants prescriptions for children appear to show that there could be, in some cases, little benefit of using the drugs. The use of anti-depressants has long been linked to increased rates of suicides in the youth category, and is said to potentially trigger thoughts of suicide and self-harm as well.

This research raises concerns over the numbers of anti-depressants being handed to children at such a young age. The NHS guidelines state that they should only be prescribed to those under the age of 18 if the child is closely monitored.

With the NHS continuing to feel the strain from the coronavirus pandemic, how can we be sure that every child is receiving the support that they should be getting?

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The Group Action Lawyers is a specialist law firm that focuses on Group Action cases. When it comes to healthcare matters like medication, this is an area of law that we work in.

We currently represent claimants in over 50 different multi-party and group action cases and have helped thousands of victims of negligence claim millions of pounds in compensation.

We have considerable experience fighting for justice for victims in a range of areas of complex laws. This includes medical negligence claims, medical device claims, data breach claims, consumer rights claims, products liability claims, misrepresentation claims, and human rights actions.

We know how confusing it can be when you do not know where to turn for legal help. This is why our team can offer free, no-obligation advice and can often tell you in minutes if you have a compensation claim that we can take forward for you.

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First published by Author on December 14, 2020
Posted in the following categories: Group Actions Latest Medical Products and tagged with | | | |

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