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Helping Parents and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional Problems, Fourth Edition

A Resource Book of Medication Information Handouts

Edited by Mina K. Dulcan, M.D., and Rachel R. Ballard, M.D.

  • ISBN 978-1-58562-506-2
  • Item #62506

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A dozen experts in child and adolescent psychiatry contributed to this new and fully updated fourth edition of Helping Parents and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional Problems, ensuring that it remains the most trusted resource for educating parents and teachers about psychotropics prescribed for children and adolescents. The book is arranged alphabetically, and each medication has its own information sheet that can be photocopied or downloaded and printed by psychiatrists, pediatricians, and neurologists for distribution to parents and teachers.

A useful resource for school staff and library patrons, the information sheets will also be helpful to nonprescribing mental health professionals talking with families about possible referral for medication.

The compendium has been designed for maximum utility and accessibility.

  • Each information sheet includes a section with general information applicable to all medications and very specific sections that include a description of the medication and why it is used, monitoring of the medication, side effects, interactions with other medications and with food, and additional information that is relevant to how the medication can best help and be used safely.
  • The book is written in a straightforward, understandable style that is accessible and nonintimidating to the lay public.
  • The number of medications covered has been expanded to reflect new drugs and older drugs recently approved for children and adolescents, such as vilazodone (Viibryd), asenapine (Saphris), and ramelteon (Rozerem).
  • Explanations of new concerns about potential side effects and FDA black box warnings for antidepressants and stimulants are included.
  • The Information on the Internet section offers a list of vetted medical and professional organizations where the reader can find additional information about child and adolescent mental health and treatment, and the book also includes robust lists of both published resources for parents and teachers and selected additional reading for health and mental health professionals.
  • Appendices cover medicines with FDA indication for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); medicines typically used for anxiety, depression, psychosis, mood stabilizing, and aggression; and an index of medicines by brand name.

No other volume offers up-to-the-minute information on psychotropic medications for youth in such an easy-to-use format. Comprehensive and authoritative, Helping Parents and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional Problems will prove indispensable to clinicians in helping to foster understanding among parents and educators.


  • Introduction forcClinicians to the fourth edition. Selected additional reading for health and mental health professionals. Publishedresources for parents and teachers. Information on the internet. Online Access. Alprazolam—Xanax, Intensol, Niravam. Amitryptiline—Elavil. Amphetamine—Dexedrine, DextroStat, Adderall, Adderall XR, ProCentra, Vyvanse. Aripiprazole—Abilify. Asenapine—Saphris. Atenolol—Tenormin. Atomoxetine—Strattera. Benzodiazepines Used for Sleep: Temazepam—Restoril; Estazolam—ProSom; Flurazepam—Dalmane; Triazolam—Halcion. Benztropine—Cogentin. Bupropion—Wellbutrin, Budeprion, Aplenzin. Buspirone—BuSpar. Carbamazepine—Tegretol, Tegretol XR, Carbatrol, Epitol, Equetro. Chlorpromazine—Thorazine. Citalopram—Celexa. Clomipramine—Anafranil. Clonazepam—Klonopin. Clonidine—Catapres, Kapvay. Clozapine—Clozaril, FazaClo, Versacloz . Cyproheptadine—Periactin. Desipramine—Norpramin. Desmopressin Acetate—DDAVP, Stimate. Diazepam—Valium. Diphenhydramine—Benadryl. Duloxetine—Cymbalta. Escitalopram—Lexapro. Fluoxetine—Prozac. Fluphenazine—Prolixin. Fluvoxamine—Luvox. Gabapentin—Neurontin, Gralise. Guanfacine—Tenex, Intuniv. Haloperidol—Haldol, Haldol Decanoate. Hydroxyzine—Atarax, Vistaril. Hypnotics: Nonbenzodiazepines: Zolpidem—Ambien, Ambien-CR, Edluar, Intermezzo; Eszopiclone—Lunesta; Zaleplon—Sonata. Iloperidone—Fanapt. Imipramine—Tofranil. Lamotrigine—Lamictal. Levomilnacipran—Fetzima. Lithium—Eskalith, Lithobid. L-methylfolate—Deplin. Lorazepam—Ativan. Loxapine—Loxitane, Adasuve. Lurasidone—Latuda. Melatonin. Metformin—Glucophage, Glucophage XR, Glumetza, Fortamet, Riomet. Methylphenidate—Methylin, Ritalin, Metadate, Concerta, Daytrana, Focalin, Quillivant. Mirtazapine—Remeron. Modafinil—Provigil /Armodafinil—Nuvigil. N-acetylcysteine. Nortriptyline—Pamelor. Olanzapine—Zyprexa. Omega-3 Fatty Acids. Oxcarbazepine—Trileptal, Oxtellar XR. Paliperidone—Invega. Paroxetine—Paxil, Pexeva. Perphenazine—Trilafon. Pimozide—Orap. Pindolol . Prazosin—Minipress. Propranolol—Inderal. Quetiapine—Seroquel. Ramelteon—Rozerem. Risperidone—Risperdal. Sertraline—Zoloft. Sodium Oxybate—Xyrem. Thiothixene—Navane. Topiramate—Topamax, Topiragen, Trokendi XR. Trazodone—Oleptro. Trifluoperazine—Stelazine. Valproic Acid—Depakene/Divalproex Sodium—Depakote. Venlafaxine—Effexor/Desvenlafaxine—Pristiq, Khedezla. Vilazodone—Viibryd. Vorioxetine—Brintellix. Ziprasidone—Geodon. Appendix 1: Medicines with FDA Indication for Attention- Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Appendix 2: Medicines Typically Used for Anxiety and Depression. Appendix 3: Medicines Typically Used for Psychosis. Appendix 4: Medicines Typically Used for Mood Stabilization or Reducing Aggression. Index of Medicines by Brand Name.


    Rachel Ballard, M.D.
    Thomas K. Cummins, M.D.
    Mina K. Dulcan, M.D.
    Nicholas Hatzis, M.D.
    Anna Ivanenko, M.D., Ph.D.
    Margery Johnson, M.D.
    MaryBeth Lake, M.D.
    James Mackenzie, D.O.
    Rebecca O'Donnell, M.D.
    Sigita Plioplys, M.D.
    Heide Hullsiek Rollings, M.D.
    Alex Timchak, M.D.

About the Authors

Mina K. Dulcan, M.D., is Head of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago; and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, Illinois.

Rachel R. Ballard, M.D., is Attending Physician (Child and Adolescent) at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago; and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, Illinois.

Parents and older children are now partners with their physician in medication treatment decisions. How do practitioners help parents make informed decisions? How do physicians ensure that parents retain all the information about a medication in terms of benefits, side effects, and how to monitor its effectiveness? Helping Parents and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional Problems is a most effective tool to help in these processes. Now in its fourth edition, it covers all the agents that might be prescribed to children for mental disorders. It explains the mechanisms, benefits and risks for each medication in clear, practical language. Unlike with Web sites or the FDA label, parents can get a sense of which risks are most concerning and how to monitor their child for side effects. Rather than simply writing Risk discussed in a progress note, the prescriber can refer to this authoritative source when documenting discussion of medication issues. Both parents and prescribers will find the handouts easy to use and filled with up-to-date information.—Steven R. Pliszka, M.D., Professor and Interim Vice Chair and Chief, Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

Providing clear and accurate information is the first step in effective treatment. In child and adolescent psychiatry, this information needs to be available and intelligible to parents, teachers, and clinicians participating in the child's care. The fourth edition of Helping Parents and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional Problems is just what the doctor ordered. It has been significantly updated since the 2007 version and it is much better targeted to our audience than the usual, generic hospital-generated medication printouts. The handouts not only facilitate both practice and training; they are a handy update for the doctors as well.—Gabrielle A. Carlson, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics, Stony Brook University School of Medicine Putnam Hall-South Campus

What is known about the use of medications to treat psychiatric conditions has substantially grown over the past several years. In addition, access to large amounts of information, some evidence-based, some, not has also rapidly expanded. For those reasons, a resource that provides accurate, cogent information that can be effectively shared with parents and parents is quite welcome. The contents of this book succeed quite nicely by conveying information about psychiatric medications that is both evidence-based and also thoughtfully informed by clinical wisdom. In Helping Parents and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional Problems, Drs. Dulcan, Ballard and colleagues have succeeded in succinctly providing accurate and reliable information that should be helpful to both parents and educators.—Robert L Findling, M.D., MBA, Johns Hopkins University & Kennedy Krieger Institute

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