Personality Disorder

The diagnosis personality disorder refers to a pattern of thinking, feeling, or behaving. These patterns are rigid and inflexible. They affect how you function in society. They are mainly problems with how you see yourself and the world and how you relate to others. This affects how you feel about yourself, your relationships with others, and your ability to control your own urges. Self-esteem may be inappropriately high or low. You may be detached or overemotional.

A personality disorder is a label to describe ways of living that cause distress for you, those you relate to, or both. For example, you may blame others for your problems. You may believe that you can't control what happens in your life. You may have trouble seeing another person’s point of view. You may not be concerned about how others feel. These patterns of seeing the world may lead to unhappiness, anxiety, or depression.

These types of personality patterns often first appear in adolescence. They may decrease or go away over time. Therapy and medicines can help. But talk therapy is the main treatment. To get better, you must want to change your life and the old ways of behaving. No one can do this for you. This means changing the way you think about yourself and others and changing the ways you act. With a support system (therapist, group support, friends, and family), it is possible to heal and learn a healthier more fulfilling way of living.

Home care

These tips may help at home: 

  • If medicines have been prescribed, take them as directed. Don't stop taking your medicines or change the dose unless you check with your healthcare provider. 

  • If you were referred to a therapist, counselor, or psychiatrist, make the appointment and keep it. If you can't relate to the therapist, ask your primary care provider for another referral. Keep searching until you find a therapist you trust. 

  • Tell all your healthcare providers about all the prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and supplements you take. Certain supplements interact with medicines. They can cause dangerous side effects. You can also ask your pharmacist when you have questions about medicine interactions.

Follow-up care

Follow-up with your healthcare provider, or as advised. 

When to seek medical advice

Call your healthcare provider right away if any of these happen: 

  • Feeling extreme depression, fear, anxiety, or anger toward yourself or others

  • Having increased relationship problems with family, friends, or co-workers 

  • Feeling out of control

  • Feeling that you may try to harm yourself or another

  • Not sleeping or eating for 3 days in a row

  • Getting requests from family or trusted friends for you to seek help

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