This small, accessible book aims to provide readers with concise and practical information, writes Tina Coldham.
But it also contains a powerful message for society about effectively drugging children for their problems, rather than better understanding their needs in an age of mass narcissism and globalisation.
Timimi, a renowned critic of his own psychiatric sector, asks readers to be aware of the culture in which the child finds itself before being quick to diagnose.
When thinking of what is normal and abnormal in children, it should be considered that in recent years the UK has increased its prescriptions for psychotropic drugs for children by more than-two thirds.
Timimi examines the diagnoses of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, depression and, in particular, autism, and points out that there is little scientific evidence to support the proposition that they are physical disorders of the brain. He covers the common drug treatments for these, again with reference to some harsh truths about their efficacy and even dangerousness.
Timimi considers psychotherapeutic approaches, the success of which, evidence suggests, depends on the quality of the relationship between the therapist and patient. Uncomfortable reading for a desperate parent seeking a quick solution, so Timimi gives some solace with final common sense thoughts and experience from his professional practice.
Tina Coldham is a national development consultant at the Health and Social Care Advisory Service
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