Borderline Personality Disorder

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Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is characterized by the inability to regulate one’s emotions effectively. This can lead to episodes of uncontrollable emotional intensity that can manifest in impulsive behavior, poor self-image and unstable relationships. Many individuals with BPD may feel things more deeply than the average person, have feelings of emptiness or isolation and struggle with an intense fear of abandonment. An estimated 1.6% of the US population has BPD, though some studies say the percentage is even higher. The majority of those diagnosed with BPD are women.

Common treatments for this disorder include dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and medication. While there is no single medication available to treat BPD specifically, there are different medications that can help different symptoms depending on what the individual is experiencing.

The intense emotional pain felt by those with BPD can lead to mood fluctuations of uncontrollable anger, depression and anxiety. Individuals with BPD may also experience feelings of dissociation, which can cause them to feel disconnected from their thoughts and body entirely. In some cases, the experienced intensity of these feelings may cause an individual to engage in risky and impulsive behaviors or have thoughts of suicide or self-harm. Individuals with BPD may be more prone to stormy and unstable personal relationships.

Information provided in part by our partner Personality Disorder Awareness Network.

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