Personality Disorder | Symptoms and Treatments

Personality Disorder | Symptoms and Treatments

Personality Disorder is a mental illness that causes a person to have difficulties in many aspects of life, such as maintaining relationships and living independently. Personality disorders are typically considered and enduring or long-term conditions that can be treated but not cured.

It may result in the following symptoms: Exhibition of intense emotions – some personality disorders can cause intense emotional reactions, which are seemingly inappropriate or disproportionate to the situation.

There are ten distinct types of personality disorders.

Antisocial Personality Disorder

Antisocial personality disorder is characterized by an individual’s disregard for the rights of others. An obvious sign of someone with the disorder is their criminal behavior which often results in incarceration. The person may also be impulsive, irritable and aggressive. People who have this condition are often parasitic towards society, i.e. they live by stealing, conning or freeloading on others.

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Borderline Personality Disorder

People with borderline personality disorder tend to exhibit impulsive and sometimes dangerous behaviors like risky sexual behavior, substance abuse or reckless driving. They are often seen as being unstable in their interpersonal relationships, which may also be characterized by manipulation. Their emotions are often intense and short-lived.

Histrionic Personality Disorder

People with a histrionic personality disorder may exhibit several symptoms like excessive attention-seeking, emotional shallowness and self-dramatization. They are usually very concerned about their physical appearance and tend to exaggerate their behaviors.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

A narcissistic personality disorder is often characterized by an individual’s preoccupation with feeling superior, a sense of entitlement and little empathy for other people. The person may be envious of others or believe that they are unique in some way. While capable of demonstrating warmth, they are often impatient and easily irritated by others.

People who suffer from paranoid personality disorder tend to exhibit several suspicious or paranoid behaviors that stem from feelings of unwarranted persecution. Generally, the person fears other people’s motives either due to real or imagined situations. They may constantly check their calendar for months ahead, seek an excessive amount of attention or show several signs of distrust.

Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder

People with this personality disorder are usually preoccupied with details, rules and schedules. They may also feel a need to be in control at all times and have little ability to express their emotions. They tend to appear inflexible and stubborn when making decisions, often displaying perfectionist tendencies.

Schizoid Personality Disorder

People with schizoid personality disorder tend to be emotionally cold, detached and introverted. They may prefer solitary activities over socializing or having relationships with other people. While they are capable of showing affection, the feelings are limited. They also find it difficult to express their feelings in speech.

Schizotypal Personality Disorder

People with schizotypal personality disorder exhibit strangeness for others by having an odd or disordered thinking pattern that is noticeable through speech and behavior. This condition may be considered a schizophrenia spectrum disorder as the symptoms are similar.

Paranoid personality disorde

People with paranoid personality disorder tend to be guarded and suspicious, always expecting betrayal or deception. They are preoccupied with unjustified doubts about the loyalty of friends or family. This can cause significant distress in social situations due to their guarded nature. They also have a tendency to hold grudges for years after being slighted by someone while taking everything personally.

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Dependent Personality Disorder

People with dependent personality disorder are often submissive and allow other people to assume responsibility for important areas of their life, like taking care of them or making decisions. They will often go to great lengths to obtain nurturance from others. They may also become excessively clingy when someone becomes available who offers this need.

Avoidant personality disorder

Avoidant personality disorder is characterized by social inhibition, feelings of inadequacy and extreme sensitivity to negative evaluation. While they are capable of showing affection, they will likely be uncomfortable in new social situations due to their fear of being ridiculed or humiliated. They tend to display low self-esteem and hypersensitivity to criticism.

Diagnosis

A personality disorder can only be diagnosed by a mental health professional who examines long-term patterns of behavior and symptoms. Patients are often asked to complete personality tests. A psychological evaluation may also be used when the doctor needs more information about a patient’s case or when there is uncertainty about the diagnosis.

Treatment

Treatment for personality disorders is often long-term and typically involves therapy. While some cases are mild, many people with a personality disorder also suffer from other mental illnesses that must be addressed simultaneously. Treatment methods may include cognitive-behavioral therapy, which allows the person to work through their feelings in a safe environment while learning healthier coping skills.

Some people with specific types of personality disorders may benefit from group therapy, particularly those suffering from dependent or avoidant personality disorder. Medications can also be used to treat associated problems like depression and low self-esteem.

There are no pharmaceuticals developed specifically to treat personality disorders. But some disordered patients may benefit from certain antidepressants or anti-psychotic medications if suffering from comorbid mental illnesses.

Some self-care and coping methods might be beneficial for those with personality disorders who want to actively engage in a treatment strategy.

  1. Learn about the condition. Be aware of the symptoms. Keep in mind that a personality disorder can be expected to continue throughout a person’s life and often requires long-term management.
  2. Be supportive but not confrontational when discussing problems with a loved one who has been diagnosed with a personality disorder. Avoid being overly critical or dismissive of their feelings, especially if it is believed they are not capable of helping themselves.
  3. You should also be aware that family members and friends will play a significant role in the person’s treatment plan. As such, they may need to participate in therapy sessions or classes with their loved ones or attend independent support groups to develop healthy coping strategies.

If you’re looking for a treatment center to help with your personality disorder, we have the resources that can provide you and your loved ones with relief. Our doctors are ready to answer any questions or concerns you may have about these disorders. Contact us today so we can start helping!