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Down Syndrome NSW
Level 6/410 Church St, North Parramatta
9am-5pm Monday - Thursday
T: 9841 444

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Library Thursdays: Down Syndrome: When to Worry About Mental Health and What To Do About It!

One of the most appreciated books in our library is Mental Wellness in Adults with Down Syndrome by Dennis McGuire & Brian Chicoine. It is a comprehensive book on mental health in people with Down syndrome written in a readable style. I was therefore surprised to see a new book on this topic come out so soon after Mental Wellness was published. Down Syndrome: When to Worry about Mental Health and What to Do About It! A Guide for Parents and Care-Givers by Robin Friendlander & Peter Johnson (NADD, 2009) covers a lot of the same ground as Mental Wellness... but it is much shorter (68p. vs. 431p.) and simpler. There is no index but it is laid out in a very straightforward way with many lists (such as "Four ways to stay mentally healthy" and "The signs of problem aggression") and summaries. There are many case study examples to illustrate the various topics and a few references at the end of each chapter for more information. There are a couple of different topics (e.g. "eating disorders") that are not covered in the same way in Mental Wellness and possibly some slight differences of opinion on some matters. I suppose the aim is to provide a book that covers the range of mental health issues in a more compact and easy way. I can see that there would be an audience for a much shorter read. Possibly the reason for the many late returns of Mental Wellness is due to its size. However, since almost everyone enthuses about the book (when they finally return it), I think that the thirst for knowledge in this area requires a thorough book. Having said that, this thirst would probably also invite books from other authors such as this one that may cover exactly the topic you are interested in, presented in a useful way.
If you would like to borrow this book or any other, email us or phone.

Other information on this topic:
NDSS: Mental Health and Down Syndrome(includes children in this article whereas the books mentioned above focus on adults and adolescents)
Len Leshin's DS Health website has many articles on health for people with Down syndrome.

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