About 1 in 6 adults in the United States reported taking psychiatric drugs at least once during 2013, according to a new research letter published online by JAMA Internal Medicine.
Thomas J. Moore, A.B., of the Institute for Safe Medication Practices, Alexandria, Va., and Donald R. Mattison, M.D., M.S., of Risk Sciences International, Ottawa, Canada, used the 2013 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey to calculate percentages of adults using three classes of psychiatric drugs: antidepressants; anxiolytics, sedatives and hypnotics; and antipsychotics.
The research letter reports:
The use of psychiatric drugs also appeared to increase with age, with 25.1 percent of adults 60 to 85 reporting use compared with 9.0 percent of adults 18 to 39 years of age. Women also were more likely to report using psychiatric drugs than men, according to the results.
The authors note that the use of psychiatric drugs may be underestimated because the prescriptions were self-reported.
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