Are our kids over-medicated?

Discussion in 'Health and Wellness' started by abcgrad94, Jun 25, 2011.

  1. abcgrad94

    abcgrad94
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    When I was a kid, every summer I'd go to camp for a week. It was the highlight of the summer and something we looked forward to every year. I remember there was always a "camp nurse" who would dispense band-aids or Tylenol, but very few kids ever had to see her, except for an occasional skinned knee or something minor. Maybe one child in the whole camp had to take medications on a regular basis.

    Recently we took our youngest to camp, and I was SHOCKED to see that most of the kids had medications to give the camp nurse. We had an epi-pen and asthma inhaler for our dd, plus asthma meds and a list of her food allergies. Turned out almost every single kid in the camp had their own medical "bag" for the nurse--behavior meds, diabetes meds, asthma and allergy meds, epi-pens, acne meds, sleep aids, you name it, those kids had it.

    What on earth has happened in the last 20 years to the health of our children?
     
  2. mandym

    mandym
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    Over protective parents that are scared to death of every sneeze and sniffle. Also plays into excessive health care costs.
     
  3. annsni

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    Unfortunately, a lot of kids have developed allergies and asthma - MANY more than when I was a kid. But some of the other meds are just incredible. Sleeping meds?? Really?? Wow!!
     
  4. Benjamin

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    I agree, it is shocking! I attribute society’s dependence on pharmaceuticals on several things. There are common sense reasons why more kids have “allergies” today! To name a few:

    1) Society’s thinking that there is pill (easy fix) for everything: too fat - take a pill, kids sit around watching TV and playing computer games – then happen to go outside to run and can’t breath – needs an inhaler, the body’s immune system responds to a one of these rare visits to the outdoors – pamper it with anti-histamines and decongestive drugs.
    2) Many of those going into the medical field and those teaching them have left their common sense about the body’s natural ability to adapt and heal at the door of medical school. Pharmaceutical companies send representatives to the colleges to promote their drugs and woo the students to use them. The medical students don’t spend any significant time learning how to naturally make the body stronger and/or to train patients to make lifestyle changes – They are taught which drugs work on which ailments and how. When they get out of school they simply prescribe medicine for everything.
    3) Another problem is the time involved and lack of training to counsel patients to make healthy lifestyle changes without the dependence on drugs – no money in that for the pharmaceutical companies. People are too lazy to use the common sense methods when there is a quick fix available – supply and demand feeds the trend.
    4) The many side-effects from overuse of drugs are swept under the rug, the reasons for this are obvious,… [sarcasm] but no worries, there is another drug out there to help or soon will be as the problem grows. [/sarcasm]

    The overuse, abuse and dependence on drugs is tragic and those of us that do have the common sense to avoid falling into this trend are being made slaves to support the pharmaceutical companies and the ignorant or unconscionable people who prefer the quick fix and place their trust in the growing modern system of pharmaceutical health care.

     
  5. Earth Wind and Fire

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    That is shocking.....what the heck is wrong with these parents? Gee, let kids be kids.
     
  6. abcgrad94

    abcgrad94
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    To be fair, none of the kids I saw with asthma were overweight and lazy. I have had asthma my whole life and it didn't happen as a result of weight and/or inactivity. I got it as an average size, active child. Same with my dd. So I can't blame that on video games and lazy parenting. I do have to wonder how much our chemically-laden food chain and air pollutants have contributed to our childrens' breathing problems.

    I was shocked that 8-12 year olds were on acne medications. The sleep meds were probably for kids with ADHD, to help them wind down and rest at night. As Benjamin pointed out, this could be to help a side effect of other meds. I don't know.

    I'm not implying that the need for many of these meds isn't legitimate, but rather, what has happened in the last 20 or so years to cause our children to be so unhealthy? Is it all the High Fructose Corn Syrup? Is it their immunizations? City living with lots of pollution? I don't know the answer, but I hate to see so many kids having to take so much medication.
     
  7. annsni

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    Seriously - but then again, we grew up on processed foods too and even though they were healthy!
     
  8. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire
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    Asthma is inherited. My whole family has it.
     
  9. Gina B

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    I'm sure there are tons of contributing factors, with pollution, lifestyle, and just plain wussiness being parts of them.

    I've got asthma, thus I find it interesting to see all the kiddos that are supposed to have it. Funny how they all have asthma when the cottonwood is at it's heaviest...could it be they are having a perfectly natural reaction to all that stuff flying in the air? Even those without allergies often have some trouble during that time out here.
     
  10. DiamondLady

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    It isn't just kids, it's adults...especially older adults...as well. I had to go for a nuclear stress test before my cancer surgery and as we were sitting the waiting room my husband commented upon the quantity of medications all the patients seemed to be carrying...boxes (like small makeup cases) filled with pill bottles. When I went in for my appointment the nurse asked if I brought my medications with me. I said, no and she asked why not. I said, "Because I don't TAKE any!" She looked at me quite strangely. Even the cardiologist couldn't believe I take nothing and asked why I don't take anything for my fibromyalgia. I replied, "Because the side effects of the medication they give you are the same things you take the medication to stop!" He looked at me, smiled and said, "you're a smart lady."
    I believe the problem lies with the parents (or patient in the case of adults). We accept that the doctor knows what he's talking about and just accept that piece of paper with no questions, take the pills/inhalers/liquids, etc and think it's going to make us well instead of realizing we take this pill to stop that and then another pills to counter the side effects and another for those side effects...we'd have done better to fix it naturally if possible through diet, lifestyle changes and the like, and if medication is necessary to take it for the shortest period of time possible.
     
  11. dcorbett

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    My loving Mother had a pill to counteract another pill....etc.etc.etc

    She took approx 12 pills with every meal. And she still died at age 78.

    I take one pill to block my estrogen since my cancer is estrogen receptor positive. I pray that my cancer won't return, I have made it 4.5 years so far.

    We are living with pollution, processed foods, poisoned water, and every other problem imaginable. Our world is a mess. No wonder so many people have allergies and respiratory issues now, not to mention cancers and other diseases.
     
  12. rbell

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    I struggle with many of these question...and I think there are multiple answers.

    The toughest one for me is asthma. There's no doubt things are worse than they were 100, 50, or even 25 years ago...why? I don't know. Lower resistance? Pollution? (although I think we're probably better off than we were 20-30 years ago) "Wussification? Tough questions.

    I think other meds are a bit easier to answer...disclaimer: here are legit needs for many of these meds...but I think that in most case, kids are WAY, WAY overmedicated.

    Unfortunately, many parents approach it with the, "Medicate first, ask questions later' philosophy. I'm not a fan of that, and I tell parents so. But....they are the boss.
     
  13. Jim1999

    Jim1999
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    Look at the adverts on the telly: "Ask your doctor about this drug or that drug." The push to take drugs for every little sneeze.

    Kids spend so much time in front of the telly or computer when years ago we were shoved out the door to play. No wonder we have so much sickness,,,,,and drugs!

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  14. Ternera

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    Yes, I do think that today's kids are overmadicated, overprotected, overregulated. As some commenters already mentioned, many problems children (and adults!) have nowadays come from our unwilling to make some lifestyle changes and turning to "easy fix" - the pills. This is our whole modern mentality: easy fix for everything.
    I grew up in Russia in 80s-90s. Children of my generation spent most of their spare time outside, playing active games or riding bikes. We played together, had our little secrets, fought and so on. It was a rare, an extremely rare case when some kid had an allergies or asthma, I'm not even talking about diabetes or obesity. Oh, and stuff like ADHD, childhood depression or insomnia was nearly non-existent. Kid in need of sleeping pills? Impossible. After a day in school, preparing homework and playing outside we fell asleep promptly and were dead to the world all night long! Yes, were were making noise in the classroom, getting in arguments and fights, put pins on teacher's chairs, but for that we were punished, not medicated. I think nowadays my whole generation would be put on Ritalin. And, also, often our parents were still at work when we come back from school, so 8-9 y.o. came back home by themselves, warmed up their lunch, and proceeded to making homeworks. Our generation grew a lot more responsible than modern kids.
    Many studies show that allergies may have psychological basis. For example, in people with multiple personality disorder, different personality have different allergies or have none. I think that a simple letting kids be kids, letting them to play and socialize with each other without monitoring their every single step and getting involved in all their activity would help. I also think that punishment would be a much better remedy for misbehavior than all those anti-depressants, stimulants and sleeping meds.
     

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