Mental Health
Resources

 email page    print page

All Topic Reviews
50 Signs of Mental IllnessA Beautiful MindA Beautiful MindA Bright Red ScreamA Casebook of Ethical Challenges in NeuropsychologyA Corner Of The UniverseA Lethal InheritanceA Mood ApartA Research Agenda for DSM-VA Slant of SunA War of NervesAbnormal Psychology in ContextADD-Friendly Ways to Organize Your LifeAddiction Recovery ToolsAdvance Directives in Mental HealthAggression and Antisocial Behavior in Children and AdolescentsAl-JununAlmost a PsychopathAlterations of ConsciousnessAm I Okay?American ManiaAmerican Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical NeurosciencesAn American ObsessionAngelheadAnger, Madness, and the DaimonicAnthology of a Crazy LadyApproaching NeverlandAs Nature Made HimAsylumAttention-Deficit Hyperactivity DisorderAttention-Deficit/Hyperactivity DisorderBeing Mentally Ill: A Sociological Theory Betrayal TraumaBetrayed as BoysBetter Than ProzacBetter Than WellBeyond AppearanceBeyond ReasonBinge No MoreBiological UnhappinessBipolar DisorderBipolar DisorderBipolar Disorder DemystifiedBlack-eyed SuzieBlaming the BrainBleeding to Ease the PainBluebirdBlueprints Clinical Cases in PsychiatryBody Image, Eating Disorders, and ObesityBorderline Personality DisorderBrain Circuitry and Signaling in PsychiatryBrave New BrainBreakdown of WillBrief Adolescent Therapy Homework PlannerBrief Child Therapy Homework PlannerBrief Therapy Homework PlannerCalm EnergyCassandra's DaughterCaught in the NetChild and Adolescent Treatment for Social Work PracticeChildren Changed by TraumaChronic Fatigue Syndrome (The Facts)Clinical Handbook of Psychological DisordersClinical Manual of Women's Mental HealthCognitive Theories of Mental IllnessCommonsense RebellionCommunity and In-Home Behavioral Health TreatmentComprehending SuicideConcise Guide to Child and Adolescent PsychiatryConquering Post-Traumatic Stress DisorderConscience and ConvenienceConsciousnessConsole and ClassifyContesting PsychiatryCoping With TraumaCopshockCrazy for YouCrazy in AmericaCrazy Like UsCreating HysteriaCritical PsychiatryCruel CompassionCultural Assessment in Clinical PsychiatryCulture and Mental HealthCulture and Psychiatric DiagnosisCultures of NeurastheniaDaddy's GirlsDante's CureDarwinian PsychiatryDaughter of the Queen of ShebaDaughters of MadnessDeinstitutionalization And People With Intellectual DisabilitiesDelivered from DistractionDepression In Later LifeDepression SourcebookDepression-Free for LifeDescriptions and PrescriptionsDestructive Trends in Mental HealthDevil in the DetailsDiagnosis: SchizophreniaDiagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV-TRDirty Filthy Love DVDDisorders Of DesireDisrupted LivesDissociative ChildrenDivided MindsDr. Andrew Weil's Guide to Optimum HealthDr. Weisinger's Anger Work-Out BookDSM-IV SourcebookDSM-IV-TR CasebookDSM-IV-TR in ActionDSM-IV-TR Mental DisordersE-TherapyEccentricsElectroshockEmergencies in Mental Health PracticeEmergency PsychiatryEmotional and Behavioral Problems of Young ChildrenEmotions and LifeEmpowering People with Severe Mental IllnessEssential PsychopharmacologyEssentials of Cas AssessmentEssentials of Wais-III AssessmentEthics and Values in PsychotherapyEthics in Mental Health ResearchEthics in Psychiatric ResearchEthics, Culture, and PsychiatryEverything In Its PlaceFamily Experiences With Mental IllnessFatigue as a Window to the BrainFear of IntimacyFinding Iris ChangFinding Meaning in the Experience of DementiaFlorid StatesFolie a DeuxFor the Love of ItForensic Nursing and Multidisciplinary Care of the Mentally Disordered OffenderFountain HouseFrom Madness to Mental HealthFrom Trauma to TransformationGandhi's WayGender and Its Effects on PsychopathologyGender and Mental HealthGenes, Environment, and PsychopathologyGetting Your Life BackGracefully InsaneGrieving Mental IllnessHandbook of AttachmentHandbook of DepressionHandbook of Self and IdentityHealing the SplitHerbs for the MindHidden SelvesHigh RiskHope and DespairHow Clients Make Therapy WorkHow People ChangeHow to Become a SchizophrenicHow We Think About DementiaHughes' Outline of Modern PsychiatryHumanizing MadnessHysterical MenHystoriesI Hate You-Don't Leave MeI Never Promised You a Rose GardenI Thought I Could FlyI'm CrazyImagining RobertImpulse Control DisordersIn Others' EyesIn Two MindsInsanityIntegrated Behavioral Health CareIntegrative MedicineIntegrative Mental Health CareIntuitionJust CheckingKarl JaspersKissing DoorknobsKundalini Yoga Meditation for Complex Psychiatric DisordersLaw and the BrainLaw, Liberty, and PsychiatryLegal and Ethical Aspects of HealthcareLiberatory PsychiatryLife at the BottomLife at the Texas State Lunatic Asylum, 1857-1997Life Is Not a Game of PerfectLithium for MedeaLiving Outside Mental IllnessLiving with AnxietyLiving With SchizophreniaLiving with SchizophreniaLiving Without Depression and Manic DepressionLost in the MirrorLove's ExecutionerLoving Someone With Bipolar DisorderMad in AmericaMad TravelersMad, Bad and SadMadhouseMadnessMadness at HomeMadness in Buenos AiresManaged Care ContractingMandated Reporting of Suspected Child AbuseManic Depression and CreativityMary BarnesMasters of the MindMeasuring PsychopathologyMedia MadnessMedicine As MinistryMelancholy And the Care of the SoulMemory, Brain, and BeliefMental HealthMental Health At The CrossroadsMental Health Issues in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Communities Mental Health MattersMental Health Policy in BritainMental Health Policy in BritainMental Health Professionals, Minorities and the PoorMental IllnessMental Illness and Your TownMental Illness, Medicine and LawMental SlaveryMindfulness in Plain EnglishModels of MadnessMothers Who Kill Their ChildrenMozart's Brain and the Fighter PilotMultifamily Groups in the Treatment of Severe Psychiatric DisordersMuses, Madmen, and ProphetsMyths of ChildhoodNapkin NotesNeural MisfireNew Hope For People With Bipolar DisorderNight Falls FastNo Enemies WithinNolaNormalNot CrazyNovember of the SoulOf Two MindsOn Being Normal and Other DisordersOn Our Own, TogetherOn The Stigma Of Mental IllnessOrigins of Human NatureOut of Its MindOut of the ShadowsOvercoming Compulsive HoardingPathologies of BeliefPathways through PainPersonal Recovery and Mental IllnessPersonality Disorder: Temperament or Trauma?Pillar of SaltPoints of ViewPoppy ShakespearePosttraumatic Stress DisorderPsychiatric Cultures ComparedPsychiatric Diagnosis and ClassificationPsychiatric Genetics and GenomicsPsychiatric Illness in WomenPsychiatrists and Traditional HealersPsychiatryPsychiatry and ReligionPsychiatry in SocietyPsychological Dimensions of the SelfPsychology and the MediaPsychopathia SexualisPsychopathologyPsychopathyPsychotic DepressionQuitting the Nairobi TrioRaising a Moody ChildRapid Cognitive TherapyRebuilding Shattered LivesReclaiming Soul in Health CareReclaiming the SoulRecollection, Testimony, and Lying in Early ChildhoodRecovery from SchizophreniaRecovery in Mental IllnessRedressing the EmperorRelational Mental HealthRemembering TraumaRepressed SpacesResearch Advances in Genetics and GenomicsRestricted AccessRethinking the DSMReviving OpheliaRewarding Specialties for Mental Health CliniciansSaints, Scholars, and Schizophrenics: Mental Illness in Rural IrelandSchizophreniaSchizophrenia RevealedSchizophrenia: A Scientific Delusion?Self-Determination Theory in the ClinicShunnedShynessSigns of SafetySilencing the VoicesSlackjawSocial Cognition and SchizophreniaSocial Inclusion of People with Mental IllnessSoul Murder RevisitedSounds from the Bell JarSpeaking Our MindsSpontaneous HealingStop PretendingStraight Talk about Psychological Testing for KidsStranger Than FictionStreet CrazyStudy Guide to the DSM-IV-TRSurviving Manic DepressionSurviving SchizophreniaSurviving SchizophreniaTaking Charge of ADHD, Revised EditionTaking the Fear Out of ChangingTalking Back to PsychiatryTarnationTeen LoveTelling Is Risky BusinessTelling SecretsThe Age of InsanityThe American Psychiatric Press Textbook of PsychiatryThe American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook Of Child And Adolescent PsychiatryThe Anger WorkbookThe Anorexic SelfThe Behavioral Medicine Treatment PlannerThe Betty Ford Center Book of AnswersThe Bipolar ChildThe Bipolar Disorder Survival GuideThe Body in PsychotherapyThe Borderline Personality Disorder Survival GuideThe Broken MirrorThe Burden of SympathyThe Cambridge Medical Ethics WorkbookThe Case for Pragmatic PsychologyThe Center Cannot HoldThe Chemical Dependence Treatment Documentation SourcebookThe Chemical Dependence Treatment PlannerThe Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy Treatment PlannerThe Clinical Child Documentation SourcebookThe Clinical Documentation SourcebookThe Complete Adult Psychotherapy Treatment PlannerThe Condition of MadnessThe Construction of Power and Authority in PsychiatryThe Couples Psychotherapy Treatment PlannerThe Criminal BrainThe Cultural Context of Health, Illness, and MedicineThe Day the Voices StoppedThe Death of PsychotherapyThe Depression WorkbookThe Difficult-to-Treat Psychiatric PatientThe Early Stages of SchizophreniaThe Employee Assistance Treatment PlannerThe Employee Assistance Treatment PlannerThe Epidemiology of SchizophreniaThe Essential Family Guide to Borderline Personality DisorderThe Essentials of New York Mental Health LawThe Ethical WayThe Evolution of Mental Health LawThe Explosive ChildThe Fall Of An IconThe Fasting GirlThe Forensic Documentation SourcebookThe Forgotten MournersThe Gift of Adult ADDThe Good EaterThe Green ParrotThe Healing Power of PetsThe Heart of AddictionThe Heroic ClientThe Insanity OffenseThe Invisible PlagueThe Last Time I Wore a DressThe Limits of Autobiography The LobotomistThe Madness of Our LivesThe Mark of ShameThe Meaning of AddictionThe Meaning of MindThe Medical AdvisorThe Mind/Mood Pill BookThe Most Solitary of AfflictionsThe Mozart EffectThe Naked Lady Who Stood on Her HeadThe Older Adult Psychotherapy Treatment PlannerThe OutsiderThe Pastoral Counseling Treatment PlannerThe PDR Family Guide to Natural Medicines & Healing TherapiesThe Places That Scare YouThe Plural SelfThe Problem of EvilThe Psychology of Religion and CopingThe Quiet RoomThe Real World Guide to Psychotherapy PracticeThe Right to Refuse Mental Health TreatmentThe Rise of Mental Health NursingThe Roots of the Recovery Movement in PsychiatryThe Savage GirlThe Self-Help SourcebookThe Talking CureThe Trick Is to Keep BreathingThe Unwell BrainThe Virtuous PsychiatristThe Way of TransitionThe Wing of MadnessThe Wisdom in FeelingTheoretical Evolutions in Person-Centered/Experiential TherapyTherapy's DelusionsTheraScribe 3.0 for WindowsThis is Madness TooThoughts Without a ThinkerThrough the Looking GlassTo Have Or To Be?Toxic PsychiatryTransforming MadnessTraumaTraumatic PastsTraumatic Relationships and Serious Mental DisordersTreating Affect PhobiaTreating Chronic and Severe Mental DisordersTreating Self-InjuryTreatment and Rehabilitation of Severe Mental IllnessTreatment Plans and Interventions for Depression and Anxiety DisordersTwinsUnderstanding and Treating Violent Psychiatric PatientsUnderstanding Child MolestersUnderstanding DepressionUnderstanding ParanoiaUnderstanding the Stigma of Mental IllnessUnderstanding Treatment Without ConsentUnholy MadnessUnspeakable Truths and Happy EndingsUsers and Abusers of PsychiatryViolence and Mental DisorderVoices of MadnessVoices of RecoveryVulnerability to PsychopathologyWarning: Psychiatry Can Be Hazardous to Your Mental HealthWashing My Life AwayWhen History Is a NightmareWhen Someone You Love Is BipolarWhen the Body SpeaksWhen Walls Become DoorwaysWitchcrazeWomen and Borderline Personality DisorderWomen and Mental IllnessWomen Who Hurt ThemselvesWomen's Mental HealthWrestling with the AngelYou Must Be DreamingYour Drug May Be Your ProblemYour Miracle Brain

Related Topics
The Bipolar ChildReview - The Bipolar Child
The Definitive and Reassuring Guide to Childhood's Most Misunderstood Disorder
by Demitri F. Papolos MD and Janice Papolos
Broadway Books, 1999
Review by Joy Ikelman
Sep 8th 2000 (Volume 4, Issue 36)

Note: The reviewer has a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, and was a bipolar child. She uses examples from her own life experiences to explore the themes of the book.

Overall Rating: Five stars (out of five)

Target Audience: Parents of children diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Also recommended for adults with bipolar disorder and medical professionals who treat children with bipolar disorder.

20/20 Insight

In January 2000, ABC News 20/20 scheduled the first prime time television segment addressing The Bipolar Child. Since I had not yet read the book, I was looking forward to the program. Perhaps I would gain insight into my own childhood struggle: inconsolable depressions, endless racing thoughts. Sensitivity to light, sounds, and touch. Reactive, quick to tears. Near mystical states. Unusually creative. Overly anxious. I was a very, very happy child at times. I was a very, very sad child, too.

The 20/20 segment was horrific. The children were shown as angry, violent, and aggressive. They broke things, threw things, hurt themselves, and threatened to kill their mothers. They were hyperactive, mean, and out of control. Would this be the theme of The Bipolar Child?

Dr. Papolos, commenting afterwards on an ABC online chat, said, "Unfortunately, the piece that aired focused on the violent behaviors of people with bipolar disorder. There is a wide spectrum. Many do not exhibit this type of violent behavior." I would clarify this by saying most bipolars do not exhibit violent behavior.

How the Book Presents the Bipolar Child

"Rages and explosive temper tantrums lasting up to several hours," "marked irritability," and "oppositional behavior" are only three of the more than 40 "Common Symptoms of Bipolar Children" which are listed in The Bipolar Child. (Most of the other symptoms are not quite as dramatic.) Throughout the book, these seem to be addressed again and again. Why? Because these are the most pernicious. These behaviors are the least understood, and the hardest to treat. Early onset bipolar disorder often presents as rapid cycling mood swings, accompanied by frightening, erratic behavior.

The Papoloses wanted the reader to know for darned sure that the realm of early onset bipolar disorder is a medical topic. It is not bad parenting, or growing up in a socially degenerate, vacuous culture, as decades of behavioral psychology would have us believe. Early onset bipolar disorder is serious stuff.

Diagnosing Children

Media reports tell us that kids are over diagnosed with psychiatric disorders and are on medications that they don't need. Reality is a lot more complex than this. It is doubtful that any parent wants her child to have a diagnosed mental illness. It is also doubtful that any parent wants to over-medicate her child. Let's give the parents some credit.

Parents try everything they can before going to a doctor to discuss their child's mental health. They go to the family doctor first, who then recommends a psychiatrist for a consultation. They discover that their medical insurance does not cover mental illnesses, or expensive psychiatric medications. Still, the parents are determined to find out what is wrong.

The American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) is used to diagnose adults, not children. Because of this, the psychiatrist will do a best guess, usually settling on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) rather than bipolar disorder. Many of the symptoms overlap.

Unfortunately, misdiagnosis can have devastating effects. Dr. Papolos warns the reader that ADHD medications and antidepressants can induce manic episodes in children who actually have bipolar disorder instead of ADHD. The Bipolar Child does an excellent job of presenting information that doctors need to make an accurate diagnosis of bipolar disorder versus ADHD or other disorders.

Treatments

The Bipolar Child addresses the physiology of bipolar disorder and the role of genetics. The chapter on treatment is the best I've ever read in a book on bipolar disorder. It describes (in plain language) the medications, plus common side effects. It is the most up-to-date information available.

As a child (in the early 1960s), I spent a lot of time visiting Doctor Johnson, our family doctor. He couldn't figure out what was wrong with me. I was a well-behaved youngster who rarely got angry. However, I was overly emotional, easily excitable, hyperactive, very intense, and prone to panic attacks and tachycardia. I couldn't get to sleep, nor stay asleep. I had night terrors. I was exhausted all the time.

Doc Johnson prescribed paregoric and quinidine for me. Paregoric, someone told me recently, is an alcoholic solution containing opium. Quinidine is an antiarrythmic (used to treat heart conditions). Doc Johnson guessed at the dosages, and told me, "This will help to slow you down." I was seven years old. The medications didn't help with the racing thoughts, depression, anxiety, or insomnia, but it was the best the Doc could figure. I took these medications until I went to college. "You'll grow out of it," the Doc said. Well, I didn't. Right on schedule, in my mid-twenties, I met the official DSM criteria for Bipolar I.

The choices doctors have for today's bipolar children are extensive. The Bipolar Child emphasizes that early, proper treatments may prevent worsening of bipolar disorder. Although treatment remains an inexact and frustrating process, things are getting better. Still, I'm sure most psychiatrists feel much like Doc Johnson, who wondered how many spoonfuls of paregoric a very young child could tolerate.

Common Sense and Good Ideas

There is plenty of good stuff in The Bipolar Child for psychologists and therapists, too. This book is not just about medical theory and prescription medications, it is about adapting, coping, and dealing with the symptoms of bipolar disorder. (Studies have shown a much higher success rate when therapy is combined with medication compliance.) The book also gives practical information on working within the mental health care system, understanding insurance plans, hospitalization, and dealing with nosy neighbors. Plus, there is a whole section devoted to a bipolar child's educational life, and the need for an Individual Educational Plan. The common thread among all the pearls of wisdom is the Scout motto: BE PREPARED.

What's Missing in the Book?

This book is a mainly about children younger than twelve. I also get the overall impression that this book is about boys. What about girls and their unique problems with mood disorders? How about the very depressed children? How about the ones that don't throw tantrums but cry quietly when no one is looking? How about the daydreaming, sensitive, and isolated kids? And those who are paranoid, sleepless, having nightmares, migraines, anxiety?

What happens when these kids reach the magic age of puberty? There was a chapter on the topic, but it was incomplete. The authors addressed substance abuse and hypersexuality, which certainly may be a problem with some bipolar kids. But where was the discussion of the bipolar teen's suicidal thoughts? How about self-injuring, cutting, and eating disorders? What about self image because of weight gain from meds? How does it feel when your self-confidence is so low that you are afraid to date? There is enough material for another book. Might I suggest the title The Bipolar Teen.

Finally, where was a much-deserved section on the successful, creative, and bright kids? How about the ones who are coping well, seeing changes in their own young lives, and celebrating life? Let's hear from the kids.

Courageous Kids, Courageous Parents

Bipolar kids are courageous kids. It is no fun to experience rapid mood swings when you are a child. It is confusing, embarrassing, and mostly unpredictable. You feel guilty for letting your parents down. You feel bad for things you did when you were rageful, even though you didn't mean to do them. And depending on the reaction of your parents, you may feel like a failure, or a bad kid. You can't tell anyone you are suicidal, so you only let out clues.

Parents of bipolar children are heroes, fighting every step of the way to deal with bipolar disorder. They ache for their little ones. They feel very alone in their struggle. They love until their heart breaks. They may see their boy or girl destroy possessions, shatter relationships, hurt themselves, or even attempt suicide.

The Bipolar Child is dedicated to these courageous boys and girls, and to their parents who are trying to make sense out of all of this. The book is ultimately about love and how to move into action to save one life at a time.

Web Resources:
The Bipolar Child Web site

Parents of Bipolar Children

Child & Adolescent Bipolar Foundation

Pendulum Resources

Joy Ikelman's Bipolar Info

National Alliance for the Mentally Ill

Joy Ikelman has worked as a scientific writer and editor for more than twenty years. She has a B.S. from Concordia College, Nebraska, with additional coursework from the University of Colorado. She is published in the fields of geophysics and the history of science. Joy has also written newsletters, book reviews, and press releases while participating in various community organizations. Her favorite activity is enjoying quiet time with Ike, her sweetheart of 22 years. Her interest in mental health preceded her own diagnosis with bipolar disorder. Philosophically, Joy believes that knowledge is power, and that a patient with any illness has a fundamental right to question, learn, and contribute.


Share

Welcome to MHN's unique book review site Metapsychology. We feature over 7800 in-depth reviews of a wide range of books and DVDs written by our reviewers from many backgrounds and perspectives. We update our front page weekly and add more than thirty new reviews each month. Our editor is Christian Perring, PhD. To contact him, use one of the forms available here.

Can't remember our URL? Access our reviews directly via 'metapsychology.net'


Metapsychology Online reviewers normally receive gratis review copies of the items they review.
Metapsychology Online receives a commission from Amazon.com for purchases through this site, which helps us send review copies to reviewers. Please support us by making your Amazon.com purchases through our Amazon links. We thank you for your support!


Join our e-mail list!: Metapsychology New Review Announcements: Sent out monthly, these announcements list our recent reviews. To subscribe, click here.

Interested in becoming a book reviewer for Metapsychology? Currently, we especially need thoughtful reviewers for books in fiction, self-help and popular psychology. To apply, write to our editor.

Metapsychology Online Reviews

Promote your Page too

Metapsychology Online Reviews
ISSN 1931-5716