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Personality Disorder: Types, Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

What is a Personality Disorder

A personality disorder is a dangerous mental condition that puts someone into unhealthy functioning, thinking, and behaving. People with such disorders tend to have distress perceiving and negatively relating to people and situations. However, personality disorders can be managed when someone seeks medical attention from professionals.

Personality disorder

Types of Personality Disorder

The types of personality disorders are classified into three categories. Each category has various symptoms in common as listed below:

Cluster A

Cluster A involves eccentric and unusual behaviors or thinking. People with this type of personality disorder display a limited range of emotions, especially when interacting with others. These feelings can include the fear of other people trying to threaten or harm the individual, and/or having difficulty being in a relationship. This cluster includes:

Schizotypal disorder
Paranoid disorder
Schizoid disorder

Cluster B

Cluster B involves erratic and dramatic behavior. These individuals display unstable, intense emotions, impulsive behaviors such as causing emotional or physical harm, refusing their responsibilities, and mood swings. This cluster includes:

Histrionic (hysterical) disorder
Antisocial disorder
Borderline disorder
Narcissistic disorder

Cluster C

Cluster C involves severe fear and anxiety. These people tend to have chronic feelings of being highly sensitive and believing relatives and friends negatively judge them. This cluster includes:

Obsessive-compulsive disorder
Avoidant disorder
Dependent disorder

Diagnosis of Personality Disorder

This disorder is like a disease. It will distract your life until you start the process of fighting it. This begins with diagnosing the condition based on a comprehensive interview with an expert therapist. The diagnosis process is determined by:

Psychiatric Evaluation

This involves a discussion about the patient's feelings, thoughts, and behavior. With the patient's permission, more information about family members and friends may be needed.

Physical Exam

The doctor will conduct a physical test and ask you questions regarding your health. This might include screening and lab tests for drugs and alcohol.

Diagnostic Criteria (DSM-5)

The expert will look to find a matching disorder listed in the DSM-5.

Causes of Personality Disorder

Personality disorders are commonly caused by a mixture of genetic factors such as family history. This can include the following:

Childhood trauma / abuse
Brain changes

Risk Factors

Personality disorders can happen to both men and women. Below are some of the risks factors in developing a personality disorder:

Unstable, abusive, or chaotic family during the childhood
Variations in brain structure and chemistry
Family history of mental illness
Physical, sexual, or emotional abuse
Prior history with anxiety or depression

Symptoms and Signs of Personality Disorder

Symptoms depend on the type of personality disorder. Some of the symptoms are listed below:

Physical Symptoms

Anxiety, palpitations, trembling
Rapidly changing emotions

Psychological Symptoms

Fearful thoughts that may cause insomnia
Believing other people are envious or being envious of others
Feeling inferior, inadequate, or unattractive

Behavior Symptoms

Excessively dramatic, emotional, or sexually provocative
Persistent lying, using aliases, stealing and conning others
Impulsive behavior
Consistently irresponsible
Aggressive, often develop violent behavior
Constantly seeking attention

Treatment Options for Personality Disorder

Experts recommend starting the treatment as soon as it is diagnosed to quicken the healing process. There are various treatments for personality disorders based on the type of disorder as below:


Psychotherapy is when a psychiatrist, psychologist, or psychotherapist helps the patient to understand his/her feelings, thoughts, and motivations. The expert’s insights help to manage the disorder symptoms towards developing satisfying relationships and making positive behavior changes. The commonly utilized types of psychotherapy includes undergoing supervised individual and group therapies.

Medical Treatment

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), mood-stabilizing, antipsychotics, and antidepressants are prescribed medicines for personality disorder patients. These medications are used to fight co-occurring problems and symptoms of the disorder. They tend to conquer impulsiveness, depression, anxiety, and aggression.

Inpatient and Outpatient Treatment

Patients with severe symptoms of personality disorder are advised to undergo inpatient treatment. Inpatient is a great treatment for borderline personality disorder. It offers 24/7 supervised medical care and general psychiatric care. The patient will have continuous medication management, nursing care, physical exercise, and personal and group psychotherapy.

Outpatient treatment is mostly recommended for people with mild effects of personality disorder. It involves seeing your professional doctor for ongoing support and counseling on a monthly, weekly, or daily basis. This is also a good treatment for avoidant personality disorder, as it allows the patient to continue with his or her regular activities.

Process and Stages of Personality Disorder Treatment in VipVorobjev Clinic

We have experts who will manage and coordinate you in an overall recovery program. The first step involves accessing the patient history and the severity of signs and symptoms. This will help our experts decide on the right method of treatment. We have different treatments based on the type of personality disorder the patient is struggling with.

Patients with borderline personality disorder are generally referred to inpatient treatment, while those with more mild disorders such as antisocial personality disorder will go to outpatient. We also have medical treatment options as well as psychotherapy with individual and group sessions.

Is It Possible to Fight Personality Disorder on Your Own

No! Remember, this disorder affects the patient’s way of thinking, acting, and feeling. The affected person is not in his or her normal state; therefore, trying to treat it on your own can lead to riskier actions such as taking the wrong medications and taking excess medication. A certified doctor is necessary to create the right treatment plan.

Effectiveness of Personality Disorder Treatment

Personality disorder is a lifelong challenge; however, treatment and working with a psychologist makes it possible to bring negative personality accentuations into a positive direction, allowing you to be more productive, feel more comfortable socializing with people, and be happier.

Average Duration of Treatment for Personality Disorder

The length of treatment depends on many factors including the degree of the personality disorder, severity of manifestations, the patient's willingness, and adherence to treatment. The duration of treatment can be months or years.

Cost of Personality Disorder Treatment

The treatment normally starts at 5,500 €.


Meet our team of professionals:

Igor Skoruta — Reanimatologist and Anesthesiologist
Nikola Senic — General Medicine
Milos Pejovic — Occupational Therapist
Neva Pocuca — Clinical Psychologist
Ivana Matovic — Psychologist

Patents and Certificates

We are Certified, Registered Alcohol, Drug and Addiction (DAACC) specialists. Our MDs, PhDs, and master's level specialists do everything possible to help you come out of your personality disorder to your regular life.


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