Medications that are Used in Treatment:

Medications are used for treatment of some behavioral problems. They are used to control the ASD patient so that they don’t harm someone or themselves and work more effectively at schools and home. The medications given can also be used for similar symptoms for other disorders. Sometimes doctors prescribe some medication that is “off-label”. Off-label refers to a medication which is not FDA approved but the doctor thinks it is safe to provide a child with that medicine. More research are being planned to find out how effective and safe these psychoactive medicines are to be used by people of all age groups.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of United States of America approved a brand on October 6th, 2006. Risperdal, or as generically called risperidone, treat the irritation and aggression in the children of ages 5-16 who are suffering from Autism.  This is the first time that a drug is approved to treat the symptoms of Autism in children. Under the heading of irritation, these symptoms include temper tantrums, self-injuries and aggressive behaviors.

Another off-label medication that has been used to treat the aggressiveness and other autism-related disturbance is Olanzapine (Zyprexa). Off-label medicines are the medicines that doctors find appropriate to be used by a child although they are not approved by FDA. Similarly other medications for treating symptoms of Autism in children are sertraline (Zoloft), Fluoxetine (Prozac) and Fluoxetine. These medicines help to control depression.

There are these antidepressants known as sertraline and Fluoxetine. They are also called as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). Although the SSRIs have been acknowledged as safe and effective, they still leave some side effects on the young users.The age limit of young adults was increased to 25 in the year 2007.The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a “black box” label that contains warning about the potentiality of increment in risk of thinking about suicide in the users. Black box warning can be described as the most serious warning on the label of a drug. According to this warning, the users should be monitored carefully in the beginning levels of treatment and any sign of suicide, growth in depressive behavior and change in the routine pattern should be reported to the doctor.

The response to medication of an autistic child may be different from a non-autistic child. Parents should always be careful when deciding on a doctor for their child. They should make sure that the doctor has an experience of working with children suffering from Autism. Also close care should be taken of the medication that a child is using and doctor’s approval is a must. Keep updated about the changes your child is experiencing and beware of the side effects of the medicines. Take help from the “patient insert” that comes with the medicine. Use it for references when many other medications are being used.