Most people have never heard of Borderline Personality Disorder, which is also referred to as BPD. Borderline personality disorder is a condition characterized by difficulties regulating emotions. This usually means that individuals who experience borderline personality disorder feel emotions intensely and for extended periods of time. Living with borderline personality disorder is not easy however people do it every day. There is no certain way to test for borderline personality disorder. There are symptoms, causes, treatment plans, and alarming statistics all associated with borderline personality disorder.
There are a total of 9 symptoms and key signs that a person with borderline personality disorder can experience. An individual must experience 5 out of the 9 symptoms for borderline personality disorder diagnosis to be given. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual diagnostic framework,Some keys signs include:
*Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment by friends or family
*Unstable personal relationships that alternate between idealization and devaluation
*Distorted and unstable self-image, which affects mood, values opinions, goals and relationships.
*Impulsive behaviors that have dangerous outcomes such as suicidal threats or attempts
*Periods of intense depressed mood, irritability, or anxiety lasting a few hours to a few days
*Chronic feelings of boredom or emptiness
*Inappropriate, intensive, or uncontrollable anger often followed by shame and guilt
*Dissociative or disconnecting from your thoughts or sense of identity or “out-of-body” type of feelings – and stress-related paranoid thoughts
The causes of borderline personality disorder aren’t fully understood. There are environmental factors like a history of child abuse or neglect and borderline personality disorder can also be linked to genetics or brain abnormalities. There are also a couple of risk factors that increase the risk of developing borderline personality disorder. These include hereditary problems and stressful childhood.
Treatment for borderline personality disorder is not an easy road. Borderline personality disorder is mainly treated using psychotherapy but medication may be added. Your doctor also may recommend in-patient treatment if your safety is at risk. Psychotherapy is also called talk therapy and is a fundamental treatment approach for borderline personality disorder. Your therapist may adapt the type of therapy to best meet your needs. There are many goals of psychotherapy. These include: focus on your current ability to function, learn to manage emotions that feel uncomfortable, reduce your impulsiveness by helping you observe feelings rather than acting on them, work on improving relationships by being aware of your feelings and those of others, and learn about borderline personality disorder. Some types of psychotherapy are dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), schema-focused therapy, mentalization-based therapy (MBT), transference- focused psychotherapy (TFP) and good psychiatric management. Although no medications have been approved to treat borderline personality disorder, medications may help treat symptoms or co-occurring problems such as depression, anxiety, or aggression. You just have to remember that recovery takes time. You have the best chance for success when you consult a mental health provider who has experience treating borderline personality disorder.
There are some alarming statistics about borderline personality disorder. 4.5 million people in the U.S. experience borderline personality disorder that’s about 1.2% of the total U.S. population. 7 out of 10 people with borderline personality disorder attempt suicide. 1 out of 10 people with borderline personality disorder complete suicide. 50%- 80% of people with borderline personality disorder take part in risky behavior such as drug abuse and self-mutilation.
So what can you do? The stigma that surrounds borderline personality disorder can be more debilitating than borderline personality disorder itself. We need more awareness of the disorder, so we can learn to understand this commonly misunderstood illness, and prevent the dangers, and the death it causes. If you suspect that you or someone you know has borderline personality disorder please seek help immediately. Visit www.nimh.nih.gov. to learn more about borderline personality disorder.