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Personality Disorder - Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment and Home Remedies

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Personality disorders are a group of mental health disorders involved in patterns of how a person thinks, feels, and behaves. Read the below article to know more about it.

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Abhijeet Soni

Published At April 19, 2022
Reviewed AtMay 9, 2024


A personality disorder is a mental disorder in which a patient has a rigid and unhealthy pattern of thinking, functioning, and behaving. Hence, the person faces difficulties in daily life. Some people may not even realize that they have a personality disorder as their behavior seems normal to them. These types of disorders usually affect teenagers, and by middle age, it may reduce.

What Are the Common Symptoms of Personality Disorder?

Personality disorders are classified into three groups depending upon similar characteristics and symptoms. The following are the clusters and respective signs and symptoms.

1. Cluster A Personality Disorders:

These include odd, eccentric thinking or behavior. Also, paranoid personality disorder, schizoid personality disorder, and schizotypal personality disorder may be seen.

A. Paranoid Personality Disorder

  • The person faces distrust.

  • May have unreasonable fear that others might use the information against them.

  • May hold grudges.

  • Suspicion of a partner that is recurrent and unjustified.

B. Schizoid Personality Disorder

  • A person loses interest in social or personal relationships.

  • Less emotional expression.

  • Little or no interest in sex.

C. Schizotypal Personality Disorder

  • Specific thinking, beliefs, speech, or behavior.

  • May have odd perceptual experiences.

  • Emotional problems

  • Indifferent and suspicious.

  • May have "Magical thinking" that they can influence people.

2. Cluster B Personality Disorders:

This cluster involves dramatic, overly emotional, or unpredictable thinking or behavior. They comprise antisocial personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, histrionic personality disorder, and narcissistic personality disorder.

A. Antisocial Personality Disorder

  • Insensitive.

  • Continuous lying, stealing, using aliases, conning others.

  • Aggressive.

  • Irresponsible.

B. Borderline Personality Disorder

  • Behavior that is impulsive and risky.

  • Intense relationships can be unstable.

  • Mood swings.

  • Suicidal thoughts.

  • A feeling of emptiness.

  • Stress.

C. Histrionic Personality Disorder

  • Seeks attention constantly.

  • Too emotional.

  • Easily gets influenced.

  • Rapid change of emotions.

  • Too much into appearance.

D. Narcissistic Personality Disorder

  • Think of themselves as special and important.

  • Fantasies related to power, success, and attractiveness.

  • Exaggerates about achievements.

  • Expect admiration and praise.

  • Arrogant.

  • Expectations are unreasonable.

  • May envy others or think that others envy them.

3. Cluster C Personality Disorders:

These types of disorders include anxious, fearful thinking or behavior. They comprise avoidant personality disorder, dependent personality disorder, and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder.

A. Avoidant Personality Disorder

  • Excessively sensitive to rejection.

  • Feels inadequate.

  • Socially less interactive.

  • Extremely shy.

B. Dependent Personality Disorder

  • Excessively dependent on others.

  • Submissive or clingy behavior toward others.

  • Lacks self-confidence.

  • Has difficulty in starting or performing projects on their own.

  • Fears disapproval.

C. Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder

  • Wants excessive perfectionism.

  • Wants to control everything.

  • Difficulty in discarding worthless or useless objects.

  • Rigid.

  • Stubborn.

It has to be understood that obsessive-compulsive personality disorder is different from obsessive-compulsive disorder, which is a type of anxiety disorder.

What Are the Risk Factors of Personality Disorder?

While the precise causes of personality disorders remain unknown, numerous traits appear to raise the likelihood of developing one:

  • Particular character attributes involve constantly attempting to avoid damage or, conversely, having a strong desire to seek out unique activities that raise the heart rate.

  • Early life encounters involve an unstable, unpredictable, or unsupportive home atmosphere. An instance of trauma, whether it be from physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, is also included.

How Can It Be Diagnosed?

When individuals visit the physician, questions will be asked regarding their personal and medical history, along with signs and symptoms they are facing. After that, the following will be done:

  • Physical Examination - Their psychiatric problems can be related to an underlying physical disorder. Further evaluation may involve laboratory tests and a screening test to check for alcohol and drugs.

  • Psychiatric Evaluation - This can be done in the form of a questionnaire or details from friends and family.

  • Diagnostic Criteria Included in the DSM-5 - Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), which was published by the American Psychiatric Association, may be used to categorize the disorder.

How Can It Be Treated?

The treatment is decided based on the type of personality disorder, the severity, and the patient’s life situation. Often, a multidisciplinary approach is required to take care of psychiatric, medical, and general health. The treatment can go on for months and years.

The following are the team members who are associated with managing a personality disorder:

  • Psychiatrist.

  • Psychiatric nurse.

  • A psychologist or other therapist.

  • Social worker.

  • Pharmacist.

If the symptoms faced by the patient are mild, only a primary specialist, like a psychiatrist, is enough to take care of the condition. The heart of the management lies in psychotherapy, also known as talk therapy.

1. Psychotherapy: Psychotherapy with a qualified mental health professional helps in recognizing the condition and also about the moods, thoughts, and various behaviors. Also, it helps to learn ways to manage stress and personality disorders.

Psychotherapy can be provided in various ways, like individual sessions, group therapy, or sessions consisting of family and friends. Also, social skills training can be taught to patients.

2. Medications: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not yet proven any specific medication to treat personality disorders. However, certain medications can help in managing the symptoms due to personality disorders like the following:

  • Antidepressants.

  • Mood stabilizers.

  • Antipsychotic medications are also known as neuroleptics.

  • Anti-anxiety medications.

When the condition gets severe, hospitalization may be required.

What Are the Complications of Personality Disorder?

Personality disorders have the potential to drastically affect both the patient's life and the daily lives of others close to them. They could lead to problems at work, school, or in relationships. Additionally, they may result in additional psychological issues and addictions.

Can Lifestyle Modification and Home Remedies Help?

Following lifestyle modifications and home remedies can help in managing the personality disorder when done along with other management techniques as mentioned above:

  • Actively participate in psychotherapy sessions.

  • Properly take the medications.

  • Understand and learn about the condition one is suffering from.

  • Stay active physically.

  • Avoid the consumption of drugs and alcohol.

  • Regularly visit the physician or specialist.

When to Visit a Physician?

Individuals experiencing symptoms of personality disorder must visit a physician or mental health professional. If left untreated, it may cause problems with relationships and mood. In addition, without treatment, one's capacity to thrive and achieve personal objectives may deteriorate.


Personality disorders can affect both mental and physical health and, thus, affect the overall quality of life. Hence, early diagnosis and treatment are necessary to get a better prognosis. Consultation with a specialist has now become easy with the help of online medical platforms. Therefore, ask the queries to a specialist to get more details on the same.

Frequently Asked Questions


What Factors Trigger a Person With a Borderline Personality Disorder?

A trigger is an event that causes a significant increase in BPD symptoms. The event can be external, such as things that occur outside of yourself, or internal, such as a thought or recollection that occurs in your mind.


How to Help People With a Borderline Personality Disorder?

The following strategies can assist you in assisting someone with BPD:
- Recognize your strengths.
- Have a good quality time with friends.
- Learn more about borderline personality disorder (BPD).
- Demonstrate confidence and respect.
- Be trustworthy.
- Attachment can help you to deal with conflict.
- Encourage the use of professional assistance.


How to Check if I Have a Borderline Personality Disorder?

Borderline personality disorder cannot be diagnosed with a single test (BPD). A clinical interview with a licensed mental health practitioner is used to diagnose it.


What Are the Initial Signs of a Personality Disorder?

The following are some of the signs:
- Enjoying always being the center of attention and often becoming uncomfortable if they are not.
- There is a lack of evidence to back up beliefs that are based on strong opinions.
- Using others to their advantage.
- Provocative clothing is worn.
- Sensitive to criticism, either constructive or otherwise.
- Being unconcerned about others.
- Suicidal thoughts.


At What Age Do Personality Disorders Develop?

Adolescence or early adulthood are the most common times when personality disorders develop. They can start in childhood, though they are less prevalent. People who grow up in a disturbed home environment are more likely to acquire personality disorders later in life.


Do Personality Disorders Gradually Go Away?

Symptoms of personality disorder (BPD) diminish with age. In their 40s, some people's symptoms go away. Many people with personality disorders can learn to manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life with the appropriate treatment.


Is Anxiety a Kind of Personality Disorder?

Anxiety can appear to be a part of your personality. However, anxiety is not always a personality disorder. When it becomes unreasonable and excessive, and when it interferes with a person's capacity to function in daily life, it becomes a disorder.


Do Personality Disorders Get Worse and Increase With Age?

It is a prevalent belief that the symptoms of personality disorder become better as you get older. Many persons with this disease improve with treatment over time and can learn to live happy lives.


Can Personality Disorders Be Cured?

Although there is no cure for personality disorder, it is completely curable. Find a mental health practitioner who has dealt with personality issues before. The most common treatment for personality disorders is psychotherapy, which is a sort of talk therapy.


What Is Meant by Treatable Personality Disorder?

The majority of personality disorders are untreatable, and overcoming the condition becomes extremely difficult. But undergoing treatment, on the other hand, can help alleviate some of the distressing symptoms associated with a variety of personality disorders. The type of treatment varies based on the disease, but psychotherapy, a type of counseling, is the most common.


Is Bipolar a Type of Personality Disorder?

Bipolar disorder is a type of personality illness that causes erratic mood swings, energy levels, concentration, and the capacity to carry out daily chores.


What Happens if a Personality Disorder Is Left Untreated?

Untreated personality disorders raise the likelihood of alcohol and drug dependence, violent or self-destructive conduct, and even suicide.


Can Someone With a Personality Disorder Change?

The majority of patients with personality disorders get better over time as they age. The reasons for this modification are unknown. The person must continue to get therapy as usual, and the opportunities for healing can help facilitate these changes.
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Dr. Abhijeet Soni
Dr. Abhijeet Soni



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