Notes on Medication


Please refer to a psychiatrist, reputable books, or trustworthy websites for information on particular medications, usage, and side effects. It is wise to have an overview of medicines frequently prescribed.

Perhaps these extra little things we learned may be useful:

  • If the medication regimen is new to your family, anticipate on-going psychiatric care. Although there are still psychiatrists who provide counseling, from what we’re seeing, it is most common to have a counselor for therapy sessions, in addition to a psychiatrist for medication needs. So, yes, we not only need to search for a counselor, we need to search for a psychiatrist or a physician to prescribe.
  • Essentially, this means we are building a team of caring individuals. We have shared contact information between our psychologist and psychiatrist, and they have conferred with one another on several occasions, which has been very helpful.
  • Be prepared for medication issues. Medications can take a while to begin to work. Side effects thwart the use of many. In other cases, a certain medicine doesn’t seem to do the job, so the psychiatrist will change the prescription. In our experience, changing one often means changing another. Finding the right balance can take time. It can be frustrating, but hold on to hope!
  • Cultivate a relationship with the pharmacist. Pharmacists are so highly trained, and are generally accessible by phone. We have called with specific questions about medications and side effects, yet also about personal situations such as adding over-the-counter cold medicines, or what do if there has been a medication mess up (missed pill, wrong pill, etc). Our pharmacists have always been very friendly and willing to help us, beyond what we might have expected; they have spent quite a bit of time on the phone answering questions, and been very compassionate. We have also received some ideas about working with our insurance company, and one even attempted to help us obtain some coupons (unsuccessful, but very kind).
  • Our daughter is very sensitive to medications, and has experienced awful side effects with many. Because we have been working with a number of different medications in effort to find the most beneficial combination, we early realized that the medicines that were not right for her were then a non-returnable waste of money. So upon receiving a new prescription, we often request a partial filling at the pharmacy, like a week’s worth. Frequently, unpleasant side effects have shown up immediately, so this plan has saved us considerably. Important note: Always contact the psychiatrist about any side effects right away to discuss what steps to take. Occasionally, ours has encouraged us to give it more time; usually, we see him again and he prescribes an alternative.

Again, finding the balance can be painstaking, but it is so important in helping our children to better health.