An analysis of studies shows that more students with developmental disabilities are medicated than ever before, and many are being prescribed antipsychotics.
Nearly one tenth of all young people given antipsychotic drugs has been diagnosed with a developmental disability, according to the findings of the research published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
In addition, one child in six with autism or an intellectual disability has been prescribed the antipsychotic drugs. The research included 39 studies which examined over 350,000 young people.
Some antipsychotic medications are used to treat symptoms associated with autism spectrum disorder, such as aggression and irritability, however they are not usually indicated to treat the core features of intellectual disability or ASD.