Borderline Personality Disorder

All you Need to Know About Borderline Personality Disorder

With nearly six percent of the adult human population suffering from the ailment, borderline personality disorder (BPD) is deemed to be a common psychological condition that can prove detrimental to the professional and personal life of an individual. A mental illness that finds its roots in personality disorder, BPD is characterized by negative thinking patterns, feeling and interaction with others which are usually consistent.

What is Borderline Personality Disorder?

Borderline personality disorder stems from an unstable assumption that a person has about himself/herself and others. This causes a distinct hindrance in the way in which an individual relates to other people around him and gives rise to negative feelings and behavioral patterns which may be intense enough to interfere with a person’s ability to function. Most patients who suffer from BPD are individuals who come from an unstable, abusive or violent family background and their past experiences have a bearing on their reaction to a specific situation.

Symptoms of BPD

Individuals who suffer from BPD will have an unstable self image which can change rapidly and drastically; this leads to unstable emotions and relationship issues. It is not unusual for these patients to go from idolizing another person to devaluing the very same individual. Similarly they also experience rapid and frequent changes in emotions. BPD sufferers may also have abandonment issues and they tend to react impulsively without thinking which can often prove self damaging; intense anger and recurring suicidal tendencies are also common.

Causes of Borderline Personality Disorder

Although the precise reason that causes the onset of BPD has eluded mental health professionals, certain scenarios when put together can act as a trigger. For instance, a combination of faulty thought patterns, biological vulnerabilities and social stressors can lead to the condition. Biological issues found in individuals who suffer from the illness include abnormalities in the size and functioning of the frontal lobes, amygdala and the emotional centers of the brain. Some research also points to the fact that BPD patients may have areas of the brain which are more or less active than other individuals.

Factors that Increase Susceptibility to BPD

Individuals who come from divorced families and an environment of substance abuse, neglect, sexual abuse are exceptionally susceptible to the ailment; also, emotional distress due to the death of a loved one may trigger the condition in latter life. Children who are diagnosed with partial symptoms of BPD display certain temperaments and may have learning disorders. On the other hand, adolescents who suffer from BPD may also have a tendency of alcohol abuse which may have increased the risk of developing BPD.

Risk Factors Associated with BPD

Individuals who suffer from the ailment also have a propensity to develop other behavioral and personality related conditions such as eating disorders and substance abuse. Adolescents who are afflicted by the disorder may also be suffering from other mental illnesses such as passive aggressive personality disorder, schizophrenia and sociopathic tendencies. Some individuals may also have intense narcissistic tendencies. Some experts also believe that the condition is a variation of bipolar disorder.

Psychotherapy, particularly dialectical behavior therapy is found to be particularly effective in treating patients who suffer from BPD. Depending on the intensity of the symptoms, psychiatric medication may also be recommended which includes antidepressant and mood stabilizers; however, these drugs fail to address the illness in its entirety. In some cases, partial hospitalization may also be recommended.