Medication
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Home > Psychiatry & Mental Health > Medication
A psychiatric medication is a licensed psychoactive drug taken to exert an effect on the mental state and used to treat mental disorders. Usually prescribed in psychiatric settings, these medications are typically made of synthetic chemical compounds, although some are naturally occurring.

Prescription psychiatric medications, like all prescription medications, require a prescription from a physician, such as a psychiatrist. 

DID YOU KNOW THAT….

  • Psychiatric drugs are available in different forms, which include, regular tablets or capsules, orodispersible tablets, short and long acting injections and liquids.
  • They can be administered orally and by intramulscular injection.
  • Choice of a drug should be made jointly by the prescriber and the patient and/or carer whenever possible.
  • Drug treatment should be ocnsidered only part of a comprehensive package of care.
  • There are certain drugs which could be used during pregnancy and breast feeding. Patients who are at high risk of relapse are best maintained on medication during and after pregnancy.
  • It is best to avoide alcohol while on psychotropic medication. This combination can lead to dangerous interactions and also rendering the drugs less effective.
  • For some drugs used in psychiatry, smoking significantly reduces drug plasma levels and higher doses are required than in non-smokers.
  • Medication should always be taken under medical supervision. Self medicating is a dangerous practice. In general, psychotropic drugs should not be discontinued abruptly.
  • If taken under proper medical supervision, modern psychiatric drugs are extremely effective and have a favourable side-effect profile

There are 7 major classes of psychiatric medications:

  • Antidepressants, which are used to treat disparate disorders such as clinical depression, dysthymia, anxiety, eating disorders and borderline personality disorder.
  • Stimulants, which are used to treat disorders such as attention deficit disorder and narcolepsy and to suppress the appetite.
  • Antipsychotics, which are used to treat psychoses, schizophrenia and mania. 
  • Mood stabilizers, which are used to treat bipolar disorder and schizoaffective disorder. 
  • Anxiolytics, which are used to treat anxiety disorder. 
  • Depresants, which are used as hypnotics, sedatives, and anesthetics. 
  • Acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, which are used in the treatment of dementia.
 
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NATIONAL COUNCIL FOR MENTAL HEALTH
Resource Centre - Colombo 08
No. 96/20, Kitulwatta Road,
Colombo - 08.
Sri Lanka
Tel +94 112 685 960 / +94 114 339 606-7
Fax +94 112 685 950
Email council@ncmh.lk
 
NATIONAL COUNCIL FOR MENTAL HEALTH
Gorakana - Residential Facility
No. 115/2, Galkanuwa Rd.
Gorakana, Panadura.
Sri Lanka
Tel +94 383 398 317 / +94 384 927 506 / +94 382 297 702
Fax +94 382 287 203
Email council@ncmh.lk
         
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