Most common mental illnesses in children

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Most common mental illnesses in children

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One of the most important facts that we've come to understand about childhood mental illnesses is that half of them begin before age 14. Three-quarters of all mental illnesses, for all people, begin before the age of 21. We really do have to think about childhood and adolescence as areas of risk for emotional vulnerability and psychiatric illnesses. Anxiety disorders, mood disorders, and impulse disorders are the most common conditions, but there are also developmental delayed disorders, and the autistic spectrum disorders. Later on in teenage life, systems manifest a little differently. Eating disorders, substance abuse disorders, and for a small number of people, the development of a psychotic illness.

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Kenneth Duckworth, MD

Psychiatrist, Harvard Professor & Medical Director for NAMI

Ken Duckworth, MD, serves as the medical director for NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness. He is triple board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in Adult, Child and Adolescent, and Forensic Psychiatry and has extensive experience in the public health arena.

Dr. Duckworth is currently an Assistant Clinical Professor at Harvard University Medical School, and has served as a board member of the American Association of Community Psychiatrists. Dr. Duckworth has held clinical and leadership positions in community mental health, school psychiatry and now also works as Associate Medical Director for Behavioral Health at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts.

Prior to joining NAMI in 2003, Dr. Duckworth served as Acting Commissioner of Mental Health and the Medical Director for Department of Mental Health of Massachusetts, as a psychiatrist on a Program of Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) team, and Medical Director of the Massachusetts Mental Health Center.

Dr. Duckworth attended the University of Michigan where he graduated with honors and Temple University School of Medicine where he was named to the medical honor society, AOA. While at Temple, he won awards for his work in psychiatry and neurology. He also has a family member living with mental illness.

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