Personality disorders

What are personality disorders?

Personality disorders are enduring patterns of behaviours, thoughts and feelings that deviate from social norms. Many people exhibit these behaviours, thoughts or feelings occasionally, but deviations that persist across situations and cause significant distress and impairment are considered disorders.

There are a number of different personality disorders. These include; antisocial personality disorder (disregard for the rights of others); schizoid personality disorder (detachment of social interactions and limited emotional expression); schizotypal personality disorder (discomfort of close relationships, cognitive distortions and eccentric behaviour); paranoid personality disorder (distrust and suspiciousness of others); borderline personality disorder (self-harming, difficulty relating to others); histrionic personality disorder (patterns of attention-seeking behaviour and emotions); narcissistic personality disorder (disregard of others, inflated self-image); avoidant personality disorder (feelings of inadequacy, social inhibition); dependent personality disorder (extreme psychological dependence on others); obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (excessive control, orderliness); and personality disorder not otherwise specified (mixed symptoms).

What is the evidence for comorbid personality disorders?

Moderate to high quality evidence suggests around 42% of people with bipolar disorder have a personality disorder. The most common are; obsessive-compulsive, borderline, paranoid and histrionic. There is a medium-sized increased risk of personality disorders in people with an early age of onset of bipolar disorder (<18yrs) compared to people with a later onset of bipolar disorder.

April 2019

Last updated at: 6:00 am, 9th April 2019
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