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Erica Komisar, LCSW, is a clinical social worker, psychoanalyst, parent guidance expert who has been in private family practice in New York City for more 25 years, and author of Being There: Why Prioritizing Motherhood in The First Three Years Matters

In this episode of the Bottom Line Advocator Podcast, Erica joins Bottom Line President Sarah Hiner to discuss and expand on her recently published op-ed for The Wall Street Journal titled “We’re Overmedicating Our Children.” Erica wrote the piece after witnessing the dramatic increase in medicating children for emotional problems (stress response, family issues, trauma, or pressure to achieve). Instead of addressing the underlying issues, she believes that many parents, doctors and practitioners are taking the “easy” solution—silence the symptoms with dangerous medications.

How’d we get to this point? And what can we do about it? Listen in as Sarah and Erica get to the bottom of it.

Other topics explored…

  • Why Erica chose to write her Op Ed “We’re overmedicating our children” (2:22 – 3:12)
  • Why so many people are treated for ADHD when they don’t actually have it (3:14-5:30)
  • The important physical and emotional roles mothers must have during the first three years of a child’s life (and the influence it will have on the child’s emotional regulation going forward) (7:18 – 11:55)
  • How a parent’s guilt is a signal—and a good one (19:54 – 20:54)
  • The life-threatening dangers of stimulant medications used to treat ADHD (listen up parents)  (20:56 – 22:42)
  • The two critical age windows of brain development and why it’s never too late to save the relationship you have with your child (and 3 steps on how to do it) (31:10 –38:14)

The Bottom Line:  Our parenting strategies are negatively impacting the physical brain development and associated emotional development of our children. They need to be heard, not silenced with medication. A glimmer of hope—children’s brains continue to develop until age 25 and parents still are very important and influential in their emotional development.

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