Our 6 year old son was put on Zoloft 12.5 mg. a day for his anxiety and hopefully to help his mutism at school. He has just been on it for 5 days and doesn’t seem to be doing to bad, just a little upset stomach the first hour or two after taking it. My question is this a strong enough dosage to do any good? What is an appropriate dosage to be helpful to a child this age with select mutism and anxiety? I’d like to know so I can talk to our doctor about it at our next appointment.


Every child is different. Honestly. I start children on very low dosages, and at the same time I start doing behavioral techniques. The low dose of medication is just used to JUMP START therapy. In other words, it is meant to lower anxiety just enough to do all the behavioral therapy necessary to build coping skills. I gauge how much medication is needed by how a child is doing with the behavioral therapy to help his anxiety. If he is making progress, I do not up the medication dosage at all. If after a certain amount of time (varies according to parents, child and situation) we may increase the dosage to help the child do the behavioral therapy. Some children are so anxious, that it is difficult to make progress with behavioral therapy alone, or on certain levels of medication, so we up the dose and change behavioral tactics.

If side effects occur, we lower medication dosage…Dealing with medication is so individualized. It is important to realize that what works for one child may or may not work for another. So monitoring closely is so key to progress.

I certainly hope your doctor has either put together a plan to help your son at school and other social situations or has referred you to someone that can help you with that. Using medication alone is not a good idea at all.

Dr. Elisa Shipon-Blum