Child Mental Health

Psychiatrists and psychologists could diagnose children with five new mental disorders

Psychiatrists and psychologists could be able to diagnose children with five mental disorders that previously did not officially exist

The American Psychiatric Association is revising its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and suggests the following disorders for children be added to the manual:

* Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in Preschool Children
* Temper Dysregulation Disorder with Dysphoria
* Callous and Unemotional Specifier for Conduct Disorder
* Non-Suicidal Self Injury
* Non-Suicidal Self Injury Not Otherwise Specified.

A list of the clinical descriptions for these proposed conditions to be included in the fifth edition of the DSM can be found here.

The American Psychiatric Association also proposes including a number of new psychiatric conditions for adults.

The DSM is the lead tool around the world and the UK for diagnosing psychiatric and psychological conditions.

Some mental health professionals are alarmed that non-clinical problems are being pathologised into psychiatric conditions.

“In the new edition [of the DSM], temper tantrums among toddlers and heartache over a lost spouse could now be defined as mental health conditions,” asserts Jerome Wakefield of New York University’s Department of Psychiatry.

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