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Antipsychotic Medications

Home Drug Abuse and Addiction Antipsychotic Medications

Antipsychotic or neuroleptic is a sedative psychiatric medication commonly used for delusions or hallucinations. The first generation of antipsychotics also known as typical antipsychotics was discovered in the 1950s. The second generations of antipsychotics are called atypical antipsychotics. Both typical and atypical antipsychotics block brain receptors in the brains dopamine pathways, but antipsychotic drugs develop a large range of receptor targets.

History of Antipsychotics

One of the very first antipsychotic drugs, chlorpromazine, was used as a surgical anesthetic. The effect produced for the patients was calm and relaxed. This later was classified as a “chemical lobotomy”. In the pase, chlorpromazine proved to diminish the effects of psychosis more effectively than any lobotomy procedure. A neuroleptic drug is another way of describing antipsychotic. The word neuroleptic was produced from the Greek. V is the Greek word that refers to nerves. More importantly the word means taking hold of one’s nerves. Reduced activity, lethargy, and impaired motor control are some of the side effects but at one point they were evidence of great success that the drugs were working. Another classification for antipsychotic drugs was major tranquilizers. These tranquilizers did provide a sedative effect but scientists or doctors prefer to use the word neuroleptic for the classification of antipsychotic drugs.


Antipsychotics are used for many different conditions but the more common conditions are schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, delusional disorder and psychotic depression. Also, antipsychotics are being spread over to not only treat psychiatric disorders but also non-psychiatric disorders. Some examples of this are Tourette syndrome, C spectrum disorders, and obsessive compulsive disorders. These drugs are also being deployed as antidepressants, anxiety medication, mood stabilizers, cognitive enhancers, antiaggressive, antiimpulsive, antisuicidal, sleep medications, and dementia for older people. Antipsychotics are most likely used in rehabilitation centers and outpatient programs. The method of use in these places can either be a highly persuasive method or by actual force. Depot injection is a way that the administration of the centers may result to where they inject the medicine into the upper part of the buttocks.

Side Effects

Harmful Side Effects Include:

  • Lowered life expectancy
  • Weight gain
  • Hyperprolactinaemia
  • Agranulocytosis
  • Tardive dyskinesia
  • Diabetes
  • Restlessness
  • Sexual Dysfunction
  • Psycosis


The withdrawals from these antipsychotic drugs are very powerful. Withdrawal symptoms can occur when switching between antipsychotic medications. The psychological withdrawal symptoms include psychosis and may be considered as a relapse of the primary disorder. It also may trigger a unnecessary relapse. Better care of the withdrawal syndrome may surprisingly increase the ability of individuals to no longer have to use antipsychotics.

Withdrawal Symptoms Include:

  • Nausea
  • Anorexia
  • Diarrhea
  • Rhinorrhea
  • Diaphoresis
  • Pain
  • Paresthesia
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia