Best practices in managing child and adolescent behavioral health emergencies.
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Behavioral health emergencies most commonly present as depression, suicidal behavior, aggression, and severe disorganization. Emergency clinicians should avoid relying solely on past medical history or previous psychiatric diagnoses that might prematurely rule out medical pathologies. Treatments for behavioral health emergencies consist of de-escalation interventions aimed at preventing agitation, aggression, and harm. This issue reviews medical pathologies and underlying causes that can result in psychiatric presentations and summarizes evidence-based practices to evaluate, manage, and refer patients with behavioral health emergencies. [Points & Pearls is a digest of Pediatric Emergency Medicine Practice].