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Psychiatric Disorders.

Psychiatric Disorders

Paul C. McCabe and Steven R. Shaw

Corwin Press, Thousand Oaks, CA, 2010

165 pages (cloth) $36.95 ISBN 9781412968768

Psychiatric Disorders is the third book in a three-volume series titled Current Topics and Interventions for Educators. This is a thirteen-chapter volume separated into three sections that includes: (1) neuropsychiatric conditions, (2) psychopharmacology, and (3) dietary control and supplement use. Psychiatric Disorders is a comprehensive resource for social workers, psychologists, and mental health professionals. The authors note that their motivation for writing the book derived from the pressures on educators in working with mental illness in schools and the accelerated rate of new information that is presented on medications. The book assists the reader by providing useful information on various psychiatric disorders that are most prevalent in schools. It empowers those working at every grade level with the tools and suggestions to assist in creating a positive and inclusive learning environment. Each chapter of the book contains introductory and background information on a specific topic followed by a section on Implications for Educators and then one on Educational Strategies. The latter assists the reader in referencing and quickly identifying ways to help support students' needs and strategies for success. As an added benefit for the reader, the book includes Discussion Questions, a Research Summary, and Handouts to support the topic at hand. These promote discussion and supplement the information presented. The reader will find that the book covers topics that are among the most pertinent to those who work in a school setting.

Section one begins by introducing what professionals need to know about the developments in neuropsychiatric treatments. The discussion includes both new challenges and old problems of systems. Topics covered are: linking neurotransmitters to behavior, increasing specificity of medications, medication side effects, de-emphasis on talk therapies, and the future direction. This first chapter sets the stage for the book and its importance.

Chapters two through five discuss how school staff can create a positive learning environment for students with neuropsychiatric conditions. It specifically focuses on and highlights Tourette's syndrome, bipolar disorder, separation anxiety disorder, and mood disorders. The authors do a fantastic job of taking steps to further empower the reader in understanding what is involved in supporting and working with children that have these conditions. Chapter four offers ways to include parents and guardians in discussions about separation anxiety disorder.

Section two includes chapters six through ten, offering a look at psychopharmacology. The first two chapters of this section focus on atypical antipsychotic identification of autism spectrum disorder and tardive dyskinesia (including typical and atypical forms). These chapters clearly provide a detailed look at both of these disorders and include valuable tips for educators. Particularly enjoyable was seeing the Abnormal Involuntary Movement Scale (AIMS) as a sample of what observations educators can provide to mental health professionals.

The next three informative chapters describe advances in medication management of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, polypharmacy prescription practices, and educational implications of commonly used pediatric medications. All of these chapters give a thorough look at how psychopharmacology plays a roll.

The focus of section three is on dietary control and supplement use. This section expands on the impact of the following interventions: (1) dietary modification in the treatment of autism spectrum disorders, (2) the prevention of and interventions for eating disorders, and (3) steroids in adolescents. This section was particularly helpful for those interested in dietary control and use of supplements by youth.

The book concludes with a glossary, references, and an index to further assist the reader. If a school social worker is looking for a detailed resource or reference support on commonly known psychiatric disorders, this book would be a worthwhile investment. It also may be a great resource to inspire conversations and create group and individual learning as it includes discussion questions and handouts. In addition, the book offers a variety of resources and current research findings that could help administrators, teachers, social workers, or parents with additional information about specific psychiatric disorders. However, caution should be given to a teacher or educator that has not had much experience with medical terminology, as the book is loaded with technical terms commonly used and utilized in medical models.

Reviewed by Danny Porter

Danny Porter, MSW, LICSW, is a lead school social worker in the Northeast Metro 916 Intermediate School District in White Bear Lake, MN. He provides clinical supervision for the profession matrix, writes test questions for the licensing exam for the Association of Social Work Boards, and serves as a board member and region representative for Minnesota School Social Workers Association.
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Author:Porter, Danny
Publication:School Social Work Journal
Article Type:Book review
Date:Sep 1, 2011
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