Pediatric Annals

CME Article 

Recognizing and Responding to Child and Adolescent Stress

Keith M. Lemmon, MD; Elisabeth M. Stafford, MD

  • Pediatric Annals. 2007;36(4)
  • Posted April 1, 2007

Abstract

Pediatricians are “committed to the attainment of optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults,” according to the mission statement of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Despite this, pediatricians are sometimes narrowly viewed as specialists who only provide assessment and treatment of “medical” problems. This view overlooks the strengths and experiences pediatricians have in providing and coordinating services to ease stress and crises in the lives of children, adolescents, and their families. In fact, for a majority of children, pediatric providers are taking responsibility for the management of psychosocial conditions that were historically managed by mental health specialists.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Keith M. Lemmon, MD, is Major, Medical Corps, U.S. Army, and is Adolescent Medicine Fellow, San Antonio Military Pediatric Center, Texas. Elisabeth M. Stafford, MD, is Colonel, Medical Corps, U.S. Army, Brooke Army Medical Center, and Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics, University of Texas, San Antonio, Texas.

Address correspondence to: Keith M. Lemmon, MD, Division of Adolescent Medicine, Brooke Army Medical Center, Building 3600, 3851 Roger Brooke Drive, Fort Sam Houston, TX 78234; or email Keith.Lemmon@us.army.mil.

Major Lemmon and COL Stafford are American Academy of Pediatrics Friends of Children Fund Research Grant Recipients. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense, or the United States government.

EDUCATIONAL OBJECTIVES

  1. Explain attributes and experiences that pediatricians possess for dealing with stress in their patients.
  2. Propose strategies that can be integrated into training programs and clinical practice to better prepare pediatricians to address childhood stress.
  3. Explain the recognition and management of stress in the pediatric clinical setting and how this best serves patients and their families.

Abstract

Pediatricians are “committed to the attainment of optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults,” according to the mission statement of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Despite this, pediatricians are sometimes narrowly viewed as specialists who only provide assessment and treatment of “medical” problems. This view overlooks the strengths and experiences pediatricians have in providing and coordinating services to ease stress and crises in the lives of children, adolescents, and their families. In fact, for a majority of children, pediatric providers are taking responsibility for the management of psychosocial conditions that were historically managed by mental health specialists.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Keith M. Lemmon, MD, is Major, Medical Corps, U.S. Army, and is Adolescent Medicine Fellow, San Antonio Military Pediatric Center, Texas. Elisabeth M. Stafford, MD, is Colonel, Medical Corps, U.S. Army, Brooke Army Medical Center, and Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics, University of Texas, San Antonio, Texas.

Address correspondence to: Keith M. Lemmon, MD, Division of Adolescent Medicine, Brooke Army Medical Center, Building 3600, 3851 Roger Brooke Drive, Fort Sam Houston, TX 78234; or email Keith.Lemmon@us.army.mil.

Major Lemmon and COL Stafford are American Academy of Pediatrics Friends of Children Fund Research Grant Recipients. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense, or the United States government.

EDUCATIONAL OBJECTIVES

  1. Explain attributes and experiences that pediatricians possess for dealing with stress in their patients.
  2. Propose strategies that can be integrated into training programs and clinical practice to better prepare pediatricians to address childhood stress.
  3. Explain the recognition and management of stress in the pediatric clinical setting and how this best serves patients and their families.

Pediatricians are “committed to the attainment of optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents, and young adults,” according to the mission statement of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Despite this, pediatricians are sometimes narrowly viewed as specialists who only provide assessment and treatment of “medical” problems. This view overlooks the strengths and experiences pediatricians have in providing and coordinating services to ease stress and crises in the lives of children, adolescents, and their families. In fact, for a majority of children, pediatric providers are taking responsibility for the management of psychosocial conditions that were historically managed by mental health specialists.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Keith M. Lemmon, MD, is Major, Medical Corps, U.S. Army, and is Adolescent Medicine Fellow, San Antonio Military Pediatric Center, Texas. Elisabeth M. Stafford, MD, is Colonel, Medical Corps, U.S. Army, Brooke Army Medical Center, and Adjunct Professor of Pediatrics, University of Texas, San Antonio, Texas.

Address correspondence to: Keith M. Lemmon, MD, Division of Adolescent Medicine, Brooke Army Medical Center, Building 3600, 3851 Roger Brooke Drive, Fort Sam Houston, TX 78234; or email Keith.Lemmon@us.army.mil.

Major Lemmon and COL Stafford are American Academy of Pediatrics Friends of Children Fund Research Grant Recipients. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Army, the Department of Defense, or the United States government.

EDUCATIONAL OBJECTIVES

  1. Explain attributes and experiences that pediatricians possess for dealing with stress in their patients.
  2. Propose strategies that can be integrated into training programs and clinical practice to better prepare pediatricians to address childhood stress.
  3. Explain the recognition and management of stress in the pediatric clinical setting and how this best serves patients and their families.

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