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Do personality disorders exist?
Personality disorders are defined as a deeply ingrained patterns of behaviour of a specified kind that deviates markedly from the norms of generally accepted behaviour and there is an abundance of research done on the topic done over the years to prove so. It is evaluated that personality disorders affect between 4 percent and 13 percent of the all human beings. This extent is considerably higher in the jail populace with figures between 25 percent and 50 percent, with a higher rate for recorded for females. Since the first presentation of personality disorders as an imperative diagnostic category in the Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders III (1980) the concept of personality disorder (PD) has met both cynicism and eagerness. In this essay I will outline the concrete evidence and research that has been carried out and reiterate the fact that personality disorders do indeed exist and are quite prominent among a high number of the population. Firstly, its best to start at the beginning and dissecting what exactly a personality is and what shapes it. The first factor that has to be taken into account when discussing personality is mood which is of course made up of both positive emotions such as happiness or negative feelings such as loneliness. Although researchers were aware of the impact of these emotions’ analysists needed to perceive how different feelings were connected. They required a model-type that would demonstrate the unique relationships inside a visual structure, and it wasn’t until James Russell developed the Circumplex model that they effectively were able to demonstrate how certain emotional states are related. The model serves three purposes first acting as a pictorial portrayal of a scope of data, secondly provide a field on which the connection between various factors can be seen and finally the items can be similarly divided to indicate consistency and accuracy. The circumplex model of affect is increasingly more consistent with numerous ongoing discoveries from social, cognitive neuroscience, neuroimaging, and formative investigations of affect. Also, the model offers new hypothetical and exact ways to deal with the development of affective personality disorders just as the hereditary and psychological underpinnings of emotional handling inside the central nervous system. The model was developed as a tool for clinical diagnosis and for specifying treatment goals with couples and families.
With the model in place and being able to be used as a framework with diagnosing people the term personality disorders came to fruition with ten different personality disorders being identified into three separate groups. They distinguished that there were two types of people with these conditions. The first, Ego-dystonic people who are aware they have a personality disorder and distressed by their symptoms such as a person with bipolar disorder knows they suffer from the problem and don’t like what it does to them. The second type of people that suffer from these personality disorders are known as Ego-syntonic people who are the opposite where they don’t think they’ve a problem and may think it is everybody else that does. Two other very important points to take into consideration the two types of well-being which are subjective well-being and psychological well-being. Subjective well-being refers to hedonistic wellbeing and how you are feeling right now this moment whereas psychological well-being refers eudaimonic happiness and how happy you are with your life overall with its direction etc. If one were to suffer from a personality disorder an individual must suffer from extraordinary or extremely unsettling disturbances in the general character and the abnormal practices displayed by the person that influences much of the individual’s personality, the disorders can not only affect themselves but also the people around them too with their behaviour. Symptoms tend originate during childhood and can at this time be treated with the correct treatment however this is not the case for adults. Their patterns of thought must deviate in either emotion, cognitions, relation with others or their impulse control to match those conditions outlined it the DSM-5. Prior to proceeding to dissect these ten personality disorders, it must be stressed that they are more the result of historical perception than of logical examination, and in this way that they are ambiguous and loose constructs. As a result, they are not presented in a classical “textbook” structure, yet rather will integrate into one another with their characteristics. Their division into three groups in DSM-5 is planned to mirror this propensity, with any personality disorder well on the way to obscure with other identity issues inside its group.
For example, in group A, paranoid personality is most likely to integrate with schizotypal personality disorder. The first of these groups cluster A is often referred to as odd or eccentric personality characteristics which holds three different types of personality disorder the first being Paranoid personality disorder is portrayed by an unavoidable doubt of others, including even companions, family, and spouses. Subsequently, this individual is protected, suspicious, and continually vigilant for intimations or recommendations to approve his fears. He likewise has a solid feeling of individual rights: He is excessively delicate to mishaps and rebukes, effectively feels disgrace and embarrassment, and tenaciously maintains longstanding animosity of hard feelings. As a result of these characteristics sufferers struggle to maintain close relationships. An individual with schizoid Personality Disorder is isolated and detached and inclined to thoughtfulness and dream. He has no craving for social or sexual connections, is not interested in others and to social standards and traditions, lacking any real emotional response despite often suffering from a deep longing for intimacy because of their ability to form as well as maintain intimate relationships with people and as end up resorting back to their own inner world. The generally however rarely need medical help and can’t look after themselves just fine. The final personality disorder of cluster A is called Schizotypal personality disorder and displays odd characteristics of appearance, conduct, and discourse, bizarre perceptual encounters, and abnormalities of reasoning like those found in schizophrenia. These last can incorporate odd convictions, supernatural reasoning and suspiciousness which can lead them to avoid social interaction as they feel it could do them harm. Those who suffer from Schizotypal personality disorder have a higher chance of developing schizophrenia in years to come.
Cluster B is home to four different types of personality disorder and encompasses dramatic, impulsive or emotional personality characteristics. The first of these being Antisocial Personality Disorder is considerably more typical in male than in females and is portrayed by an insensitive unconcern for the feelings or regard of others. The individual neglects social norms and guidelines, is bad tempered and forceful, acts imprudently, lacks remorse, and neglects to learn from mistakes. Much of the time, he has no trouble discovering connections — and can even show up externally charming. It’s also the personality disorder most firmly related with wrongdoing, he is probably going to have a criminal record, or a background marked by being in and out of jail. Next personality disorder is known as Borderline PD which is where the individual basically lacks feeling of self and, accordingly, encounters sentiments of emptiness and has abandonment issues. There are patterns of serious however insecure relationships, emotionally unstable, upheavals of resentment and savagery (particularly because of analysis), and impulsive conduct. Self-destructive dangers and demonstrations of self-harm are normal, for which reason numerous individuals with borderline PD much of the time come to medical attention. People who suffer often tend to be uncertain about their own identity, goal and even sexual orientation in some cases. Sufferers of the third PD of this group, Histrionic Personality Disorder don’t possess feelings of self-esteem and rely upon drawing in the attention and endorsement of others for their prosperity. They frequently appear to sensationalize or “play a part” in an attempt to be heard and seen. As they long for thrills and follow up on motivation or recommendation, they can put themselves in danger of mishap or exploitation. Their dealings with others regularly appear to be deceptive or shallow, which in the more extended term can unfavourably affect their social and sentimental connections. This is particularly upsetting to them, as they are delicate to criticism and dismissal and respond seriously to misfortune or disappointment. The final Personality Disorder of this cluster then is known as narcissistic personality disorder where the individual has an extraordinary sentiment of self-importance, a feeling of entitlement, and a need to be respected. He is desirous of others and anticipates that them should be the equivalent of him. He needs sympathy and promptly lies and endeavours others to accomplish his points. To other people, he may appear to be self-retained, controlling, narrow minded, egotistical, or unfeeling. In the event that he feels deterred or criticized, he can fly into an attack of dangerous displeasure and vengeance.
The final cluster C is compiled of anxious, fearful or avoidant personality characteristics. The first of the disorders in this group is known as Avoidant personality disorder. Individuals with avoidant PD trust that they are socially awkward, unappealing, or mediocre, and always dread being humiliated, reprimanded, or dismissed. They abstain from meeting others except if they are sure of being loved and are controlled even in their private relationships. Avoidant PD is emphatically connected with nervousness issue and may likewise be related with genuine or felt dismissal by guardians or companions in childhood. Next is Dependant Personality Disorder which is portrayed by an absence of fearlessness and an over excessive need to be cared for. This individual needs a great deal of assistance in settling on ordinary choices and surrenders vital life choices to the consideration of others. He extraordinarily fears abandonment and may experience impressive lengths to verify and look after relationships. An individual with dependant PD considers himself to be deficient and defenceless, thus surrendering his moral duty and submitting himself to at least one protective other. Individuals with dependent PD regularly end up with individuals with a cluster B personality disorder, who feed on the unlimited high respect in which they are held. In general, individuals with dependent PD keep up a guileless and youngster like viewpoint and have restricted knowledge into themselves as well as other people. This settles in their reliance, abandoning them helpless against maltreatment and abuse. The final personality disorder is known as Anankastic personality disorder or as its more commonly referred to as, obsessive compulsive disorder. It is described by an over the top distraction with subtleties, rules, records, request, association, or schedules; compulsiveness so outrageous that it keeps an undertaking from being finished; and commitment to work and efficiency to the detriment of recreation and connections. An individual with anankastic PD is commonly questioning and wary, unbending and controlling, humourless, and closefisted. His fundamental tension emerges from an apparent absence of command over a world that escapes his comprehension, and the more he endeavours to apply control, the wilder he feels. As an outcome, he has little resilience for multifaceted nature or subtlety, and will in general streamline the world by considering things to be either all great or all awful. His associations with partners, companions, and family are frequently stressed by the outlandish and resolute requests that he makes upon them.
Despite there being three separate clusters its clear to see similar traits and correlation between the different personality disorders which has led to some criticism from sceptics who argue too many of them share the same qualities which overlap far too frequently. For example Narcissistic personality disorder shares many of the same characteristics of histrionic despite both of them being in separate clusters and because of this grey area the most commonly diagnosed disorder is actually personality disorder not other specified (or PDNOS) the prevalence of this suggests that while clinicians can identify a personality disorder in a patient they can find it hard to distinguish one from another if they both have the same characteristics. One proposed model for solving this problem is that of the dimensional model which in essence gets rid of discreet disorders and replaces them with a range of personality symptoms, rating each person on each dimension so that the model would assess a patient not with the aim of diagnosing one disorder or another ,but instead, simply finding out if they range high on say narcissism and avoidance. It is still an experimental model and the field is till evolving so with another generation its entirely possible the clinical definition of personality disorder may change radically.
To conclude, to answer the question posed at the beginning of the essay, yes personality disorders do exist there is definitely enough evidence to support each of them individually, although it is a fair reasoning why someone would debate their validity because of their similar traits that overlap over into one another. As well as the difficulty involved in distinguishing ones which have the same characteristics but are completely different diagnosis. Another interesting fact to note as well is that most of individuals with a personality disorder never come into contact with mental health services, and the individuals who do typically do as such with regards to another psychological issue or during a time of emergency, usually after self-harming or impeding the law. Regardless, Personality disorders are vital to clinical experts, since they predispose to mental turmoil and influence the management of existing mental disorders. They additionally may result in impressive pain and distress, thus may be in need to be helped with “in their own right.” While personality orders may vary from mental disorders such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, they do, by definition, lead to noteworthy hindrance. They are assessed to influence around 10 percent of individuals, even though this figure at relies upon where clinicians adhere to a meaningful boundary between an “ordinary” identity and one that prompts critical disability. Describing the 10 personality disorders is troublesome yet diagnosing them dependably is much more so. For example, how a long way from the standard must identity attributes veer off before they can be considered disarranged? How critical is “huge hindrance”? What’s more, how is “mental disorder” to be characterized? These are questions all up for debate with the discussion still ongoing and will continue to do so in the years to come when I’m sure our characterisation and understandings of personality disorders will again have evolved.
- Personality disorders – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/personality-disorders/symptoms-causes/syc-20354463.
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- Psychology Today. 2019. The 10 Personality Disorders | Psychology Today. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/hide-and-seek/201205/the-10-personality-disorders.
- 2002. Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders. Washington, DC. American Psychiatric Association
- 1 Feb 2014 .DSM-5 Guidebook: The Essential Companion to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental 1. Disorders, Fifth Edition. Donald W. Black, M.D., Jon E. Grant, M.D., M.P.H., J.D.
- Medical News Today. 2019. Personality disorder: What are the different types?. [ONLINE] Available at: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/192888.php.
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