Age is a barrier to treatment

Parenting (Photo credit: Leonid Mamchenkov)

Age is often a barrier to families seeking mental health treatment for their loved ones. If an individual is age 14 or 16 in some states and countries, they can reject treatment (medical and mental health). I often give parents the example of our alcohol laws: if kids cannot drink alcohol until the age of 21, why are they given the responsibility to make mental health treatment decisions? What is the difference between mood and thought-altering alcohol and untreated mental health? There isn’t much difference here!

A 14 year old or older individual who is suffering from mania often needs family to step in and encourage treatment. Mania can be just as detrimental to one’s health as alcohol can be. Someone who drinks way over the legal capacity of alcohol consumption is just as dangerous to self or others as an individual with uncontrollable mania.

To learn more about this issue and ways to help your loved one (or make decisions to allow others to help you if you are in need), visit my sister-site at: Psychcentral-Caregivers, Family, & Friends or listen to my interview with Dr Gordon Atherley on Untimely psychiatric support.

All the best