Recognizing Borderline Personality Disorder

What is borderline personality disorder? This disorder is a serious mental illness which begins in late adolescence or early adulthood.  It is marked by unstable moods, behaviors, and relationships.  Most people with borderline personality disorder have marked changes in moods, frequently changing from happy to angry to sad within a matter of minutes.  Sufferers have impulsive and reckless behaviors which can include impulsive shopping, illegal activities, high risk sex, and substance abuse.  Their relationships with others are intense and short.

Individuals with borderline personality disorder have an extremely high rate of co-occurring disorders such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder.  In addition they have high rates of suicide, self-inflicted violence, and substance abuse.   They have a much higher than normal likelihood of being physically and sexually abused. As the sufferers and families try to find their own answer to the question, “What is borderline personality disorder?” they may also struggle to discover a course of therapy.

When properly identified, the disorder can effectively be treated through a number of therapies.  There are currently no medications specifically for borderline personality disorder. However, medications can be helpful for the co-occurring disorders such as anxiety and depression, allowing therapists to effectively address and treat the borderline personality disorder.

To treat borderline personality disorder, then sufferer needs to be seen by a counselor who specializes in one of several types of psychotherapy which have been found to be effective in treating the disorder.  In addition, individuals with borderline personality disorder will do best in a stable, consistent environment with the support of loved ones.

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