About.com wrote that the first edition of The Bipolar Child was “the shot heard round the psychiatric world” as this book began to change the way child psychiatry understood children suffering with these symptoms, and how they should, (and should not be) treated. In the book, the Papoloses were the first to sound a national alarm about the dangers of using antidepressant and stimulant drugs with this population of children. A second edition was published in 2002, and a substantively revised third edition in 2007. The Papoloses continue to provide the cutting-edge information that parents and professionals have come to rely on.
They comprehensively detail the diagnosis, explain how to find good treatment and medications, and advise parents about ways to advocate effectively for their children in school. In this edition, a greatly expanded education chapter describes all the changes in educational law due to the reauthorization of IDEA 2004, and offers a multitude of ideas for parents and educators to help the children feel more comfortable in the academic environment. Also included to these pages is a new IEP and a highly focused list of accommodations that can easily be incorporated into that document. Sample letters that jumpstart the IEP process and that introduce a child warmly to new teachers can also be found in this chapter.
Because written expression difficulties so dog these children and make school and homework assignments such a nightmare, a complete discussion recommends specific testing as well as specific accommodations and remediation.
The book also contains crucial information about the importance of neuropsychological testing (with a recommended battery of tests, and a detailed explanation of the updated test of general intellectual ability–the WISC-IV)), hospitalization, and the world of insurance.
Included in these pages is information on promising new drugs, greater insight into the special concerns of teenagers, and additional sections on the impact of the illness on the family. These children easily become bored and provocative with siblings and parents; they can go into “mission mode” when requests cannot be gratified instantly; and many suffer sleep inertia–they simply cannot get up in the morning–causing parents to start each day with dread and agitation. Techniques to modify these behaviors will help the children gain control and make home life less stressful
In addition, an entirely new chapter focuses on major advances taking place in the field of molecular genetics and offers hope that researchers will better understand the illness and develop more targeted and easier-to-tolerate medicines.
The Bipolar Child is rich with the voices of parents, siblings, and the children themselves, opening up the long-closed world of the families struggling with this condition. Already proved to be an invaluable resource for parents whose children suffer from mood disorders, as well as for the professionals who treat and educate them, this new edition is sure to continue to light the way.