Drug Interactions Between Psychotropic Medications and Contraceptives 2/25/2021

Contraceptives are commonly used in women of childbearing age, many of who are also taking psychotropic medications for mental health concerns. It is important to be aware of the interactions between contraceptives and certain psychotropic medications as well as the psychiatric side effects of contraceptives themselves. Contraceptives have synthetic estrogen, progesterone or a combination of […]

Assessment & Treatment of ADHD in Adults 2/19/2021

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) affects about 1/3 of adults who had ADHD in childhood. It can be difficult to diagnose because of the overlap in symptoms of adult ADHD with depression, anxiety and substance abuse, and because of challenges in obtaining observational data beyond the patient’s self-report of symptoms. It is of note that studies of […]

Update on Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder: DMDD 2/11/2021

Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD) is one of the new diagnoses included in the current DSM V manual and it is generally seen as a helpful diagnosis to fill a gap for many children presenting with complex psychiatric symptom profiles involving severe emotional and behavioral dysregulation and disruption.   It can be particularly helpful for youth […]

What Now?   Management Strategies when a Suicide Screen is Positive 2/5/2021

Last week’s newsletter encouraged readers dealing with teenagers to conduct a screening inquiry for suicidality, noting the rationale for inquiry and the resistance most of us feel about opening a potential Pandora’s box.    This week’s article pulls from prior newsletters and from feedback from readers to speak to the “What Now?” of suicide screening— discussing […]

Screening for Suicide Risk in Teens During the COVID Pandemic 1/28/2021

With the ongoing stressors of the pandemic and media reports of apparent increases in suicidal behaviors, concerns about suicide and about suicidal and self–harm behaviors is an ongoing concern for which the medical and mental health community needs to retain front-of-mind. Even prior to the pandemic suicide was the second leading cause of death in […]

Antidepressants and Movement Disorder Side Effects 1/21/2021

Although quite rare, this week’s newsletter discusses some of what is known about the various types of movement disorder that have been reported in association with the use of antidepressant medications that are regularly prescribed to treat depressive disorders and anxiety disorders along with some lower frequency psychiatric and non-psychiatric diagnostic indications. The data reported […]

Tobacco and Nicotine Dependence 1/7/2021

The good news is that the past 50 years have seen a tremendous decrease in the incidence of Americans who are smoking, with rates of prevalence dropping from over 40% in 1965 to roughly 15% in 2017.   This said, 16 million Americans have a smoking-related health condition and smoking remains the #1 preventable cause of […]

Suicide Prevention Information & Resources for High Priority Groups 12/17/2020

This week’s newsletter provides a plethora of suicide prevention information and resources relevant to groups of youth for whom suicide prevention and intervention is of particular importance. We hope that our readers will retain this information in their files for potential future reference—both with respect to the resources for special populations but also for those […]

Tools for Parents: Some A, B, & Cs of Behavior Management 12/10/2020

Evidence-based behavioral intervention trainings for parents are one of the many techniques that, when effectively implemented, can be associated with sustained behavioral improvements among children with oppositional and disruptive behaviors. (Kazdin, 2017) Use of these interventions can strengthen positive bonds between children and their parents and may also reduce the need for referrals for higher […]

Medication Management for Adolescent Anxiety 11/20/2020

For a more than a decade there has been evidence in the literature that Selective Serotonin Reuptake inhibiters (SSRI) can help teenagers with anxiety disorder feel and function better (Ipser et al., 2009). While these medications are not FDA approved for anxiety in adolescents, it appears clear that medications, in particular in combination with therapy […]