Sunday, July 6, 2008

Childhood Bipolar & More - Reading List

Here is the list of books I recommend on the subjects of childhood bipolar, Sensory Processing Disorder (or Sensory Integration Dysfunction), ADHD and learning differences. Some will help you distinguish the co-morbidities your child may suffer, along with bipolar. There are so many others out there, which is a great thing - this would not have been the case many years ago, but I have so little time left in the day to read. So, please feel free to suggest other titles in the comments section.

The Bipolar Child: The Definitive and Reassuring Guide to Childhood's Most Misunderstood Disorder -- Third Edition
by Demitri Papolos, MD is a must read for any parent who suspects their child may have the disorder. This book is often thought of as the authoritative source on the subject. Your child, even if he has bipolar, will not have every symptom in the book! The coverage is very comprehensive. If nothing else, it leaves you feeling like things could certainly be worse! At any rate, every parent of a bipolar child should own this book.

Kids in the Syndrome Mix of ADHD, LD, Asperger's, Tourette's, Bipolar and More!: The One Stop Guide for Parents, Teachers and Other Professionals
Help for those who are trying to differentiate between disorders and co-morbidities. A kind of spring board book that will lead you down other paths.

Intense Minds: Through the Eyes of Young People with Bipolar Disorder
Ever wonder what is going on inside you bipolar child's mind? This book is, I believe, the first of its kind. It weaves the thoughts and fears of several bipolar children together to give you an emotional look inside their world.

The Out-of-Sync Child: Recognizing and Coping with Sensory Processing Disorder, Revised Edition
The absolute bible for SPD (a.k.a. Sensory Integration Disorder (SID)). Carol Stock Kranowitz is a former preschool teacher who has since become an authority on SPD, and an absolute hero of mine. When we started at KidPower (an Occupational Therapy clinic in Albuquerque), they gave us, as they do all new parents, a copy of this book. It opened up my world and helped me to understand the chaos that was Tommy's life. I still refer to it today, three and half years later.

The Out-of-Sync Child has Fun: Activities for Kids with Sensory Integration Dysfunction
The absolute must have accompaniment to the book above. Like having lamb without mint jelly. This book is chock full of FUN activities to add to your child's "sensory diet" at home. And they are divided into the appropriate deficit categories (like vestibular, auditory, oral, etc.). What's more, they're all doable - most with easy to find and inexpensive materials. I have been making use of this book for almost four years.

The Edison Gene: ADHD and the Gift of the Hunter Child
A fascinating look at these kids (my kids, perhaps yours?) who are wired differently. Thom Hartmann looks at these children as gifts to society. He views them as divergent thinkers who are necessary for humanity to succeed and evolve. You will see the gift that your child is to this world after reading this book. He explores how best to support them and help them succeed.

Healing ADD: The Breakthrough Program That Allows You to See and Heal the 6 Types of ADD
A book by Daniel G. Amen, M.D., founder of the Amen Clinic in California, that will help you sort out your whether or not your child has ADHD instead of, or in addition to, bipolar, or some other disorder. One thing I like about this book is that it does take a somewhat holistic approach to the subject. He does not just suggest medications, but diet changes, supplements and other alternative methods of treatment.

The Blessing of a Skinned Knee: Using Jewish Teachings to Raise Self-Reliant Children
Wendy Mogel is a therapist who discovered that many of the traditions and rituals of Judaism could be applied to basic parenting in a changing world. I am not Jewish, but you do not have to be to get what you need to out of this book. It is really about making your own traditions and rituals with your children, and following the commonsense laws of parents being in charge and children needing to be supported and guided. Your kids don't need any more friends, but they do need good parents. Her form of Behavior Therapy is very inspiring (and doable).

A Mind at a Time
Well known author Mel Levine has long been a source of inspiration and information for parents and teachers alike. He is a professor and authority on learning and development in children. I first found this book when I was trying to find help for Tommy's dysgraphia and language processing disorder. Any parent can benefit from his wisdom.

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