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Overview of Mental Disorders in Children A consideration of developmental principles enhances understanding of mental illness in children and adolescents by reconciling the concept of mental disorder as a stable state or condition with the ongoing development of the child. According to these principles, a mental disorder results from the interaction of a child and his or her environment. Thus, mental illness often does not lie within the child alone. Within the conceptual framework and …

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…to adult psychopharmacology that is focusing on differential efficacy and speed of onset of these categories of psychotropics, pediatric psychopharmacology needs basic studies of efficacy. Additional information on specific medication treatment is presented in the succeeding sections, providing more detailed discussion of particular disorders. In-depth information is presented on two disorders where a great deal of research has been done, namely, ADHD and major depressive disorder, followed by briefer discussions of other childhood mental disorders.