People take medications to help physical and mental health problems. Many different medications can help our mental health and they work by targeting naturally occurring chemicals in the brain. Their existence means lots of people are less distressed by symptoms and have a better quality of life than they would have had without them.

Different medications treat symptoms of mental illnesses such as psychosis, schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, ADHD and also help with things such as agitation and sleep problems.

Sometimes medications are used with other treatments such as psychotherapy; which you have will depend on your own health and situation.

These pages cover Antidepressants, Antipsychotics, Mood stabilisers and Tranquilisers. Each section looks at:

  • What are they and how do they work?
  • Types of the drug
  • Which medication will I have to take? ·
  • How long does it take to work?
  • How long do I have to take it for?
  • How effective are they?
  • What about side effects?
  • Other sources of information

If you want to know more about medications go to Or speak to your GP or health professional.  Choosing the right medication, the medication dose, and your treatment plan should be based on your own needs and medical situation, and under a doctor's care.