4 Things You Should Know About Personality Disorders

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Personality disorders fall under mental health diagnoses that affect moods, behaviors and relationships. Parenting a teen with a personality disorder can be overwhelming and challenging. However, with some awareness and understanding, you and your teen can learn to cope. Here are four things you should know about these types of disorders.

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1. Cluster A: Eccentric Thought and Behavior

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The first cluster of personality disorders is eccentric thought and behavior disorders. This includes schizoid personality disorder (fear of intimacy), paranoid personality disorder (interpreting others’ actions as threatening) or schizotypal personality disorder (eccentric behaviors).

2. Cluster B

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Cluster B describes personality disorders that include dramatic, unpredictable behavior and overly emotional thinking. Examples include antisocial personality disorder (disregard for others’ feelings and lack of remorse), borderline personality disorder (unstable thoughts and behaviors), histrionic personality disorder (attention-seeking) and narcissistic personality disorder (only concerned about the self).

3. Cluster C

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Cluster C includes disorders that are defined by fear and anxiety. This includes avoidant personality disorder (hypersensitive towards rejection), dependent personality disorder (reliant on others for decision making) or obsessive compulsive disorder (using compulsive behavior to cope with obsessive thoughts).

4. How to Cope

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If someone you know exhibits signs of a personality disorder, help them to seek support from a mental health professional. They will be able to provide an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment options. These may include therapy, medication or at-home coping mechanisms.