Identifying the Occurrence of Borderline Personality Disorder in Teens

How common is borderline personality disorder in teens? This question can be difficult to answer with accuracy. Borderline personality disorder is difficult to identify in the teenage years because many of the behaviors indicative of borderline personality disorder are also typical of most teenagers.

Most people with borderline personality disorder have problems with moodiness, or regulating their emotions and thoughts, they are impulsive and reckless, and they have unstable relationships with others.   In addition, they suffer from a high rate of co-occurring disorders such as depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and substance abuse, which all can mask the symptoms of borderline personality disorder.

Borderline personality disorder usually begins in the late teen years, although studies suggest that symptoms of the illness may begin in childhood.  Also, some individuals are not diagnosed with borderline personality disorder until early adulthood, however upon review symptoms usually begin in adolescence.

The best answer to the question, “How common is borderline personality disorder in teens?” comes in a series of estimates. The best estimates show that approximately 1% of adolescents have the diagnosable disorder with an additional 0.6% of these adolescents developing the disorder in adulthood.

Although borderline personality disorder is often viewed as difficult to treat, research has shown that there are a number of forms of psychotherapy which have been effective in treating the disorder.  The earlier that borderline personality disorder is identified, and treated, the more likely it is that the adolescent will have a normal adult life.   Once symptoms of borderline personality disorder are in remission recurrence of the disorder is rare.