Our personality is a unique combination of our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that define us as individuals. Our responses may vary depending on the situation and the people around us. However, if a person struggles to manage their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, they may be diagnosed with a personality disorder. Various factors, including adverse environmental and social conditions, childhood experiences, and genetic predispositions, are believed to contribute to the development or aggravation of these conditions.
Types of Personality Disorder
There are numerous types of personality disorders that an individual can face, but generally, there are personality disorders that have been observed commonly.
Borderline personality disorder: Individuals having a borderline personality disorder (BPD) often fear abandonment and may exhibit intense emotions that rapidly shift from high to low. They may lack a clear sense of self and have difficulty maintaining stable relationships. Impulsive and harmful behaviors, including substance abuse and reckless driving, are also common in this.
Dependent personality disorder: This disorder is diagnosed when a person's thoughts and emotions about relying on others become overwhelming and impact their daily life and relationships. They may feel needy, weak and struggle to function independently. Such individuals may allow others to assume responsibility for many aspects of their life and fear being alone. They also tend to have low self-confidence and see others as more capable.
Histrionic personality disorder: The person with histrionic personality disorder craves attention and feels uncomfortable when they are not the center of it. They may make impulsive decisions and behave provocatively to maintain concentration. They may also be seen as dramatic and easily influenced by others. On the other hand, a narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by a belief in one's superiority and entitlement.
Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder: This type of Personality Disorder is characterized by perfectionism, the need for control, and difficulty being flexible in thinking. Those with OCPD set high standards for themselves and others, feel anxious when things are not perfect, and fear mistakes made by themselves or others.
Diagnosis of Personality Disorder
To receive a diagnosis for a personality disorder, one must meet specific diagnostic criteria, which vary depending on the type of disorder. A person must meet specific standards in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) used by mental health professionals to acquire a diagnosis.
- The minimum number of criteria a person must meet for a specific personality disorder diagnosis varies, but it is typically more than one or two criteria.
- It is critical to get a diagnosis from a mental health professional, as these criteria are only guidelines, and each person's situation is unique.
- Signs that you need professional assistance include persistent difficulties in daily functioning, including managing emotions and maintaining relationships.
- These problems should not be solely due to substance use or medical conditions. A personality disorder is a long-term behavior and thought pattern that goes beyond the temporary effects of drugs or physical conditions.
Coping with Personality Disorder
During overwhelming stress, numerous coping strategies can be used to manage and alleviate distress. These may include talking to someone, keeping a mood diary, planning for difficult situations, seeking professional help, practicing mindfulness and relaxation exercises, and caring for one's physical health. It is important to remember that everyone is unique, and what works for someone may not work for another. Therefore, it is essential to be kind to oneself and continue to explore and adapt coping strategies over time.
Self-analysis and self-care is the best way to cope with personality disorders, but taking outside help occasionally is also suggested. Mental health experts and counselors can help individuals learn better coping skills for a better mindset.
If you're someone or know someone going through a similar disorder, get connected with Solh Wellness. The best mental wellness solutions at ease of access. Download the Solh Wellness App and take a step towards better mental health and life.