In Syndromes & Disorders

Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder

emotionally unstable personality disorder

Personality disorders are being diagnosed left and right these days and knowing a bit about some of the more common issues that are addressed is one way to be sure you are not being misdiagnosed. Though a doctor is the only one that can give you a definitive diagnosis, it is always helpful to know a bit about what you have been labeled as having. Discover more about the Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder. 

What is Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder?

There are two schools of thought when it comes to this disorder, those that lean toward it being a borderline disorder and those that claim it is a full on disorder. Those that are of the mind that emotionally unstable borderline personality disorder is a better terminology than something like unstable emotional personality disorder believe that this is a gateway disorder that leads to more serious issues down the road.

This disorder overall is one that affects the emotions and actions of the person that has been diagnosed. There are a few core features of the disorder that help classify it, namely the drastic and rapid switches and changes in emotion. Those that are affected by this disorder generally have mood swings of which they have absolutely no control. One moment they may be happy and healthy, the next, they may be crying and wanting to self harm. There is no real way to know when a mood swing or a bout of mania is coming and there is little that can be done to stop it or to help those that are being affected by it.

In most cases, those that are affected by this disorder may seem what some people consider manic which means they experience their emotions far deeper and more profoundly than others. They may see their triumphs as far outpacing others while their defeats can end up being debilitating. It is always difficult to function as someone that lives with this disorder and as such they need special treatment and special help to deal with it.

Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder Symptoms

There are a few symptoms that are fairly easy to spot that may lead you to believe that you or someone you know is suffering from this disorder. Since this is a personality disorder most of the symptoms that you will notice are related directly to the personality and the interactions of the person at hand. For starters, they may experience negative emotion or emotion that spirals out of control. They may be lead to bouts of extreme anxiety, sadness, and even hostility toward others. They may also have extreme reactions to small things like criticism or perceived slights. They may also express their emotion in very theatrical or dramatic ways. These individuals will also have very rapid changes in behavior and emotions that are unpredictable and unstoppable.

They may also feel unhappy, depressed, or despondent very often which may lead to serious issues. When they are in the antagonism phase of the disorder they may feel very real anger and may be hostile and angry often. This will make it hard to talk to them and will make it even harder to get them to find treatment. Those that are in the disinhibitation phase are more likely to need stimulation. They will get bored often, they may be promiscuous or do things that are dangerous simply on a whim. In most cases, those that are affected will do whatever it takes to get a thrill and to have fun making them very irresponsible.

Since this is a personality disorder, it may vary from person to person but they will likely exhibit one or more of the symptoms that have been discussed here. In most cases, these changes are rapid and cannot be pinpointed as to when they started making this a very serious issue and something that can lead to self harm or to the person putting themselves in dangerous situations if they are not stopped as quickly as possible.

What Causes Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder?

There are a few different theories as to what causes this disorder and all are relevant and valid to a certain extent. Many believe that this disorder is caused by an imbalance of hormones in the body paired with the way that the person was raised as a child. This has some validity as hormone fluctuations can cause extreme sadness, anger, happiness, and much more that is associated with the disorder. Similarly, repressed abuse or other issues from child hood can also cause a person to lash out in their adulthood which may be the cause for the disorder.

Some believe that the disorder is hereditary and that those that have parents that also suffer will have the disorder. While it does seem to run in families much like diseases like schizophrenia and bipolar disorder do, there are also cases reported where there was no family history of the disorder at all.  In most cases, the cause is unique to the individual that is being treated and cannot be pinpointed to any one even or issue.

Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder Treatment

There are a few different treatment options when it comes to this type of personality disorder and some are effective while others provide little more than a band aid to help deal with the issues that are at hand at the time. One very effective treatment is psychotherapy. Those that undergo this type of therapy are going to be exposed to their fears, their inner thoughts, and are going to be expected to use the therapy as a venue and a place for their inappropriate behavior and thoughts that may not be seen as necessary. Those that attend therapy are asked to keep their emotions in check in every day life and express the emotions that they have to suppress when they are in the therapy room.

A good therapist will also show a patient how to cope with the outburst and the feelings that they get when they are at a peak or a low. This means that when they do have an outburst or they do feel strongly one way or another, they are going to be able to talk about it and try to figure it out on their own without blowing up on others. In most cases those that undergo therapy will also be given a medication to help keep their emotions level.

Pharmacotherapy is very effective when it comes to personality disorders. There are currently no medications that have been approved to treat this type of personality disorder but there are some medications that can help. Antipsychotics and antidepressants can help level off moods and keep hormones at a more level place. These drugs paired with therapy can greatly improve the way that any individual is able to deal with this disorder. This type of drug can be mixed with one another and therapy to produce a very level personality that is easier to manage and far more pleasant for everyone involved.

There are some people that claim that a healthy diet paired with vitamins and exercise is all that you need to help level off this type of personality disorder but thus far there has been no conclusive evidence that it actually does anything. Though a healthy diet and vitamins can help to balance hormones, most people that suffer from the disorder have much more than hormones to blame for their disorder. That being said, though a healthy diet may make you feel better, it will not reduce the amount of mood swings, highs, and lows that you may experience as a direct result of this disorder.

Others also claim that things like religion can help, again while they may help your spiritual health, they are not likely to cure the disorder. If you feel that you or someone you know is suffering from emotionally unstable personality disorder it is crucial that you seek immediate help. Too often this type of disorder goes untreated and ends in tragedy. The highs and lows may not seem like a big deal to those around you but they can lead to thoughts and attempts at suicide and even a suicide that is successful. This type of disorder can also lead to drug abuse and alcohol abuse so getting treatment is crucial. With the right doctor and the right treatment anyone can learn how to manage their emotionally unstable personality disorder and lead a healthy, happy, and productive life that is free of mood swings.

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