- 28 Apr 2023
- Psy. Neha Sahu
What are Personality Disorders?
A personality disorder is an enduring pattern of inner experience and behavior that deviates markedly from the expectations of the individual’s culture, is pervasive and inflexible, has an onset in adolescence or early adulthood, is stable over time, lead to distress or impairment.
Types of Personality Disorder
Types of personality disorders are grouped into three clusters, based on similar characteristics and symptoms. Many people with one personality disorder also have signs and symptoms of at least one additional personality disorder. It's not necessary to exhibit all the signs and symptoms listed for a disorder to be diagnosed.
Cluster ‘A’ Personality Disorders:
Cluster A disorders are defined by “odd” thinking and behaviors like paranoia or a lack of emotional responses.
Paranoid Personality Disorder.
Paranoid Personality Disorder (PPD) is one of a group of conditions called "Cluster A" personality disorders which involve odd or eccentric ways of thinking. People with PPD also suffer from paranoia, an unrelenting mistrust and suspicion of others, even when there is no reason to be suspicious.This disorder usually begins by early adulthood and appears to be more common in men than in women.
What Are the Symptoms of Paranoid Personality Disorder?
People with PPD are always on guard, believing that others are constantly trying to demean, harm, or threaten them. These generally unfounded beliefs, as well as their habits of blame and distrust, might interfere with their ability to form close relationships. People with this disorder:
- Doubt the commitment, loyalty, or trustworthiness of others, believing others are using or deceiving them
- Are reluctant to confide in others or reveal personal information due to a fear that the information will be used against them
- Are unforgiving and hold grudges
- Are hypersensitive and take criticism poorly
- Read hidden meanings in the innocent remarks or casual looks of others
- Perceive attacks on their character that are not apparent to others; they generally react with anger and are quick to retaliate
- Have recurrent suspicions, without reason, that their spouses or lovers are being unfaithful
- Are generally cold and distant in their relationship with others, and might become controlling and jealous
- Cannot see their role in problems or conflicts and believe they are always right
- Have difficulty relaxing
- Are hostile, stubborn, and argumentative
A). A pervasive distrust and suspiciousness of others such that their motives are interpreted as malevolent, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of context, as indicates by four(or more) of the following:
- Suspects, without sufficient basis, that others are exploiting, harming, or deceiving him or her.
- Is preoccupied with unjustified doubts about the loyalty or trustworthiness of friends or associates.
- Is reluctant to confide in others because of unwarranted fear that the information will be used maliciously against him or her.
- Reads hidden demeaning or threatening meanings in to benign remarks or events.
- Persistently bears grudges (i.e., is unforgiving of insults, injuries, or slights).
- Perceives attacks on his or her character or reputation that are not apparent to others and is quick to react angrily or to counterattack.
- Has a recurrent suspicion, without justification, regarding fidelity of spouse or sexual partners.
B). Does not occur exclusively during the course of schizophrenia, a bipolar disorder or depressive disorder with psychotic features, or another psychotic disorder and is not attributable to the physiological effects of another medical condition.
2. Schizoid Personality Disorder.
What Is Schizoid Personality Disorder?
Schizoid personality disorder is one of a group of conditions called "Cluster 'A' " or eccentric personality disorders. People with these disorders often appear odd or peculiar. People with schizoid personality disorder also tend to be distant, detached, and indifferent to social relationships. They generally are loners who prefer solitary activities and rarely express strong emotion. Although their names sound alike and they might have some similar symptoms, schizoid personality disorder is not the same thing as schizophrenia. Many people with schizoid personality disorder are able to function fairly well, although they tend to choose jobs that allow them to work alone, such as night security officers, library, or lab workers.
What Are the Symptoms of Schizoid Personality Disorder?
People with schizoid personality disorder often are reclusive, organizing their lives to avoid contact with other people. Many never marry or may continue to live with their parents as adults. Other common traits of people with this disorder include the following:
- They do not desire or enjoy close relationships, even with family members.
- They choose solitary jobs and activities.
- They take pleasure in few activities, including sex.
- They have no close friends, except first-degree relatives.
- They have difficulty relating to others.
- They are indifferent to praise or criticism.
- They are aloof and show little emotion.
- They might daydream and/or create vivid fantasies of complex inner lives.
- A pervasive pattern of detachment from social relationships and a restricted range of expressive of emotions in interpersonal setting, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by four (or more) of following:
- Neither desires nor enjoys close relationships, including being part of a family.
- Almost always choose solitary activities.
- Has little, if any, interest in having sexual experiences with another person.
- Takes pleasure in few, if any, activities.
- Lacks close friends or confident other than first degree relatives.
- Appears indifferent to the praise or criticism of others.
- Shows emotional coldness, detachment, or flattened affectivity.
- Does no occur exclusively during the course of schizophrenia, a bipolar disorder or depressive disorder with psychotic features, another psychotic disorder, or autism spectrum Disorder and is not attributable to the physiological effects of another medical condition.
Note: - if criteria are met prior to the onset of schizophrenia, add “premorbid,” i.e., “schizoid personality disorder (premorbid).
3. Schizotypal Personality Disorder.
People with schizotypal personality disorder are often described as odd or eccentric and usually have few, if any, close relationships. They generally don't understand how relationships form or the impact of their behavior on others. They may also misinterpret others' motivations and behaviors and develop significant distrust of others.
These problems may lead to severe anxiety and a tendency to avoid social situations, as the person with schizotypal personality disorder tends to hold peculiar beliefs and may have difficulty with responding appropriately to social cues.Schizotypal personality disorder typically is diagnosed in early adulthood and is likely to endure across the lifespan, though treatment, such as medications and therapy, can improve symptoms.
What Are the Symptoms of Schizotypal Personality Disorder?
Schizotypal personality disorder typically includes five or more of these signs and symptoms:
- Being a loner and lacking close friends outside of the immediate family
- Flat emotions or limited or inappropriate emotional responses
- Persistent and excessive social anxiety
- Incorrect interpretation of events, such as a feeling that something that is actually harmless or inoffensive has a direct personal meaning
- Peculiar, eccentric or unusual thinking, beliefs or mannerisms
- Suspicious or paranoid thoughts and constant doubts about the loyalty of others
- Belief in special powers, such as mental telepathy or superstitions
- Unusual perceptions, such as sensing an absent person's presence or having illusions
- Dressing in peculiar ways, such as appearing unkempt or wearing oddly matched clothes
- Peculiar style of speech, such as vague or unusual patterns of speaking, or rambling oddly during conversations
Signs and symptoms of schizotypal personality disorder, such as increased interest in solitary activities or a high level of social anxiety, may be seen in the teen years. The child may be an underperformer in school or appear socially out of step with peers, which may result in teasing
A). A pervasive pattern of social and interpersonal deficits marked by acute discomfort with, and reduced capacity for close relationships as well as s by cognitive or perceptual distortion and eccentricities of behavior, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of context, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:
- Ideas of reference (excluding delusions of reference).
- Odd beliefs of magical thinking that influence behavior and in inconsistent with subculture norms (e.g., superstitiousness, belief in clairvoyance, telepathy or “sixth sense”; in children and adolescents, bizarre fantasies or preoccupations).
- Unusual perceptual experiences, including bodily illusion.
- Odd thinking and speech (e.g., vague, circumstantial, metaphorical, overelaborate, or stereotyped).
- Suspiciousness or paranoid ideation.
- Inappropriate or constricted affect.
- Behavior or appearance that is odd and, eccentric, or peculiar.
- Lack of close friends or confidents other than first-degree relatives.
- Excessive social anxiety that does not diminish with familiarity and tend to be associated with paranoid fears rather than negative judgments about self.
B). Does not occur exclusively during the course of schizophrenia, a bipolar disorder or depressive disorder with psychotic feature, another psychotic disorder, or autism spectrum disorder.