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Social workers constitute a high proportion of mental health professionals and a high percentage of social workers provide mental health care. Thus, psychiatric diagnoses and pharmaceutical interventions are relevant for many social workers. This paper reviews the rise in the diagnoses of Bipolar spectrum disorders for both children and adults. It considers the safety of antipsychotic medications, a mainstay of treatment for children and adults, which, in addition to other well-documented negative side effects, have recently been shown to decrease brain volume by a significant percent. These issues are particularly relevant for children in the foster care system.


This article was originally published in Social Work in Mental Health. Copyright © 2012, Taylor & Francis.

The author's pre-print (pre-refereed) article is posted here with the permission of the author.