for better mental health

Antipsychotics A–Z

Provides detailed information on all antipsychotic drugs currently available in the UK.


Aripiprazole (Abilify, Abilify Maintena) is a second generation antipsychotic.

You can find detailed information about this drug in the official Patient Information Leaflet (PIL), including what it's for, how to take it, possible side effects and safety information. This leaflet should come with your medication (usually inside the box). You can also access it online as a PDF by clicking these links:

If a drug can come in different forms (such as tablets or liquid), there may be a separate PIL for each one. You should look at the PIL for the particular form and dose you've been prescribed. All PILs are available online on the electronic Medicines Compendium (eMC).

If you have any questions about your medication you can talk to your doctor, someone at your pharmacy or call NHS 111.

Aripirazole and impulsive behaviour

If you are taking aripiprazole, you may experience urges to behave in ways which are unusual for you. This is one of the possible side effects of the drug. 

This behaviour may include:

  • addictive gambling
  • excessive eating or spending
  • an abnormally high sex drive, or preoccupation with an increase in sexual thoughts or feelings.

If you experience these side effects while taking aripiprazole, you should tell your doctor or psychiatrist as soon as possible. 

See our page on the side effects of antipsychotics for information about other possible side effects.

What else might I want to know?

  • About psychiatric medication. For what you should know before taking any psychiatric drug, receiving the right medication for you, and your right to refuse medication, see our pages on psychiatric medication.
  • About antipsychotics. For how they work, what they’re prescribed for, what to know before taking them, side effects of antipsychotics, withdrawal effects of antipsychotics and alternative treatments, see our pages on antipsychotics.
  • About side effects. For what to do if you experience a side effect, see our page on coping with side effects.
  • About coming off medication. For information on making your decision, planning withdrawal and withdrawal symptoms, see our pages on coming off psychiatric drugs.
  • About accessing treatment. For information on this, see our pages on seeking help for a mental health problem.
  • About interactions with recreational drugs and alcohol. For information on this, see our page on recreational drugs and medication.

This information was published in September 2020. We will revise it in 2023.

References are available on request. If you would like to reproduce any of this information, see our page on permissions and licensing.

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