There are several treatment options for behavioral disturbances (BDs) in dementia. However, the choice of a specific psychotropic agent is directed by personal preferences and local community practice patterns. We examined the relationship between common clusters of BDs and the use of different classes of psychotropic agents in our community. A cross-sectional study of 430 long-term care residents from 5 nursing homes was undertaken. The Behavior Measurement Scale (BMS) was used to measure the frequency of BDs grouped in 4 categories. Residents with > 4 BD episodes in at least one category during a 2-week observation period were the behavior group and were considered to have clinically significant BDs. A sample of patients who had < 4 BDs in all BMS categories during the same observation period defined the nonbehavior group. A BD cluster was defined as > 4 BDs occurring in one or more BMS categories during the 2-week observation. Data on functional status, comorbidity, use of benzodiazepines, antidepressants, and neuroleptic agents were collected with chart review. The chi-square test was used to examine the correlation between variables. Clinically significant BDs were identified in 27.2% (117/430) of the residents in the sample. Five of 15 behavior clusters accounted for 73% of all clinically significant BDs. The 5 clusters were verbally nonaggressive behaviors (cluster 1, 20.5%), behaviors from all 4 categories (cluster 2, 17.9%), verbally and physically nonaggressive behaviors (cluster 3, 14.5%), physically nonaggressive behaviors (cluster 4, 12.8%), and verbally aggressive and nonaggressive behaviors (cluster 5, 7.7%). Cluster 5 had a negative correlation with functional impairment (P = .009). There was a significant correlation between cluster 2 and benzodiazepine use (P = .014). No other significant correlation was found between any of the 5 clusters and demographic variables, comorbidity status, and use of antidepressant or neuroleptic medications. Residents in the behavior group had higher impairment in self-feeding (P = .036) and bathing (P < .001) and were more likely to be treated with benzodiazepines (P = .004) and neuroleptic agents (P = .009) than residents in the nonbehavior group (n = 116). The higher use of neuroleptics and benzodiazepines in the behavior group compared with the nonbehavior group indicates that BDs are being identified for treatment, but the medications used may not be efficacious. The lack of association between specific classes of psychotropic medications and distinct behavior clusters indicates that clinicians are not using a standardized approach to target the neurochemical abnormalities that may underlie certain behavior clusters. Some behavior clusters correlate with impairment in specific activities of daily living categories such as bathing and feeding, making room for nonpharmacologic interventions.