Types of personality disorders

Personality disorders are grouped into 3 clusters: A, B and C.

Cluster A personality disorders

Having a cluster A personality disorder means that you find it difficult to relate to other people. You might be viewed by others as odd or eccentric.

Paranoid personality disorder

You may feel very suspicious of others and feel unable to trust them and confide in them, without any reason. You may believe people are lying or being nasty to you when this isnt’ true. You may feel easily rejected.

Your psychiatrist should rule out schizophrenia, psychosis, and mood disorders if you have been diagnosed with paranoid personality disorder.

Schizoid personality disorder

You may feel uninterested in forming social relationships and prefer to be alone. You might feel that having close relationships would interfere with your life. Other people may view you as being cold and distant.

Schizotypal personality disorder

With schizotypal personality disorder you will find making close relationships very difficult. Others may find your behaviour and reactions to emotions inappropriate or eccentric. You may feel anxious around those who do not share your beliefs.

Cluster B personality disorders

Cluster B personality disorders are grouped based on those who find it difficult to control their emotions. You might be viewed as unpredictable by others.

Antisocial personality disorder (ASPD)

With antisocial personality disorder you may be impulsive, reckless and not think about how your actions affect others. You may do things that other would not in order to get what you want. You may be easily frustrated, aggressive or prone to violence. Others may perceive you as acting selfishly and without guilt.

Borderline personality disorder (BPD)

If you are living with BPD you may experience strong emotions, mood swings and feelings you find difficult to cope with. You may feel distressed and anxious a lot of the time. You may have problems with your identity and how you view yourself. This can affect your relationships with others. BPD is also sometimes known as ‘emotionally unstable personality disorder’.

Histrionic personality disorder

If you are diagnosed with histrionic personality disorder you may like being the centre of attention and feel uncomfortable about being ignored. This can cause you to behave in a way that appears over-dramatic or over-emotional.

Narcissistic personality disorder

With narcissistic personality disorder you have a high sense of self-importance. You may act like this to cover low self-esteem. You might act selfishly to gain success and take advantage of other people.

Cluster C personality disorders

People with cluster C personality disorders have strong feelings of fear or anxiety. They might appear withdrawn to other people.

Dependent personality disorder

If you have dependent personality disorder, you may allow other people to take responsibility for parts of your life. You may not have much self-confidence or be unable to do things alone. You may find that you put your own needs after the needs of others. You may feel hopeless or fear being alone.

Avoidant personality disorder

If you have avoidant personality disorder, you may have a fear of being judged negatively. This can cause you to feel uncomfortable in social situations. You might not like criticism, worry a lot and have low self-esteem. You may want affection, but worry that you will be rejected.

Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder

With obsessive-compulsive personality disorder, you may feel anxious if things are disorganised, unplanned or not exactly right. You may have exceptionally high standards for yourself and others. You may be very cautious and think about the small details.

Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder is different to obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). OCD describes behaviour as opposed to a personality.

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