An antipsychotic is a tranquilizing
A tranquilizer, or tranquilliser , is a drug that induces tranquility in an individual.The term "tranquilizer" is imprecise, and is usually qualified, or replaced with more precise terms:...

 psychiatric medication
Psychiatric medication
A psychiatric medication is a licensed psychoactive drug taken to exert an effect on the mental state and used to treat mental disorders. Usually prescribed in psychiatric settings, these medications are typically made of synthetic chemical compounds, although some are naturally occurring, or at...

 primarily used to manage psychosis
Psychosis means abnormal condition of the mind, and is a generic psychiatric term for a mental state often described as involving a "loss of contact with reality"...

 (including delusion
A delusion is a false belief held with absolute conviction despite superior evidence. Unlike hallucinations, delusions are always pathological...

s or hallucination
A hallucination, in the broadest sense of the word, is a perception in the absence of a stimulus. In a stricter sense, hallucinations are defined as perceptions in a conscious and awake state in the absence of external stimuli which have qualities of real perception, in that they are vivid,...

s, as well as disordered thought), particularly in schizophrenia
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by a disintegration of thought processes and of emotional responsiveness. It most commonly manifests itself as auditory hallucinations, paranoid or bizarre delusions, or disorganized speech and thinking, and it is accompanied by significant social...

 and bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder
Bipolar disorder or bipolar affective disorder, historically known as manic–depressive disorder, is a psychiatric diagnosis that describes a category of mood disorders defined by the presence of one or more episodes of abnormally elevated energy levels, cognition, and mood with or without one or...

. A first generation of antipsychotics, known as typical antipsychotics, was discovered in the 1950s. Most of the drugs in the second generation, known as atypical antipsychotics, have been developed more recently, although the first atypical antipsychotic, clozapine
Clozapine is an antipsychotic medication used in the treatment of schizophrenia, and is also used off-label in the treatment of bipolar disorder. Wyatt. R and Chew...

, was discovered in the 1950s and introduced clinically in the 1970s.