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Too many cases of childhood insomnia, too much medication being prescribed

I've written before about childhood insomnia. Now I'm reading reports that insomnia is a particular problem among children receiving mental health treatment.

According to a recent press release, a study by Hasbro Children's Hospital in Rhode Island found that insomnia is a significant clinical issue for nearly a third of psychiatrists' school-aged and adolescent patients.

Of these child insomniacs, at least a quarter of them were being given sleep medication.

Although this in itself is rather shocking (at least to me), it's even more so when you consider that little data exists about the safety and effectiveness of insomnia medication for children.

If we're going to be medicating our children, we need to understand what the long term effects may be. We need to be confident that the drugs we're prescribing are effective and safe.

This doesn't seem to be the case at the moment. We need to push for more research and more understanding. Today, not tomorrow.

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Last updated: April 13, 2015

This Article Was Written By

Martin Reed

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