Personality disorders describe modes of thought and behavior that are destructive and unhealthy. And, according to a study that surveyed 5,000 people, it is common enough that it afflicts 1 in 5 people.
Wondering what the signs of personality disorder look like? Here are 5 common ones that you should know about:
- Borderline Personality Disorder
Intense mood swings, feelings of low self-worth, impulsiveness. These and others are signs of borderline personality disorder. Symptoms include erratic emotions, such as high highs and low lows, as well as difficulty staying in relationships and fear of abandonment. Those with this disorder frequently display aggressive tendencies. Other possible symptoms are a feeling of being out of touch with reality and suicidal and self-harm related thoughts. Take note that many of these thoughts and feelings are common to other disorders, too.
- Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder (OCPD)
Sufferers of this disorder display an unhealthy obsession toward perfectionism and controlling one’s environment. Not just a desire for neatness, which we all have to a certain extent. This disorder causes the sufferer to desire control in all areas of life. Symptoms include anger when circumstances do not follow their plan and an unusual preoccupation with details, which is often related to controlling one’s environment and relationships. Some aspects of this disorder may appear to be conscientiousness. But a closer examination will reveal rigidity and inflexibility. OCPD sufferers may avoid intimacy and the display of too much emotion for fear of doing or saying the wrong thing.
- Paranoid Personality Disorder
People suffering from paranoid personality disorder live with an underlying fear that others are out to get them. This paranoia may include the feeling that others are conspiring to take them down. It often encompasses an inability to trust the good intentions of others. Small slights or casual remarks seem to contain hidden threats, or are mistaken as personal attacks. Such sufferers are likely perceived as stubborn, hostile, and suspicious of everything.
- Schizotypal Personality Disorder
This disorder manifests itself through the inability to cope with social situations. Along with paranoia and beliefs that do not coincide with reality. Schizotypal personality disorder should not be confused with schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that is characterized when a person loses touch with reality. Schizotypal personality disorder, however, is a personality type that can understand their distorted perception. People with this personality are at higher risk of anxiety, depression, and social problems. At an extreme level, sufferers are at risk of schizophrenia and psychotic episodes.
- Narcissistic Personality Disorder
This disorder is more commonly known by its abbreviated term, narcissism. Famous suspected narcissists of history are Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, and Ted Bundy. Narcissists generally display an over-inflated sense of self-worth. Other attributes include a lack of caring or sympathy toward others and a feeling of being more important or more deserving than their peers. Symptoms may also include irrational disappointment when the spotlight is given to someone else.
Frequent fantasizing over being in positions of power. Belittling others who seem beneath oneself. Using and/or manipulating others to further one’s own agenda. But sufferers of this disorder have been known to have deeply hidden insecurities, too.
One should keep in mind, however, that a person with a personality disorder can still be a productive member of society. The key lies in treatment and finding ways to balance unhealthy thought patterns and replace them with productive ones. A detriment to this, however, is that personality disorder sufferers will often not suspect that they have a disorder. It is frequently left up to friends or family to encourage a person with a personality disorder to seek help. But do not try to diagnose a disorder on your own, even if you are fairly certain of what might be at fault.
Personality disorders and their treatment should be entrusted to trained professionals. If you suspect that you or a friend or family member may be suffering from one of the above disorders, seek help from a mental health professional.
Article Submitted By Community Writer