A new NIH-funded study has found that boys are more likely to have antipsychotics prescribed to them than girls are. Specifically, “around 1.5 percent of boys aged 10-18 are on antipsychotics, and then this rate abruptly falls by half, as adolescents become young adults.”

While antipsychotics are FDA-approved for use by children with certain disorders, “many antipsychotic prescriptions for young people may be for off-label purposes, that is, for uses not approved by FDA.” For example, the “FDA has not approved the use of any antipsychotic for ADHD, making its use for this diagnosis off-label.” The research in this NIH-funded study takes a deeper look into the trends of antipsychotic prescriptions and includes a few reminders to be aware of.