Psychological therapy for Personality Disorders
Personality disorders are a range of conditions such as borderline personality disorder, anxious personality disorder and various disruptive personality disorders where the personality of the person does not match the expected norms in society. The result will normally be that the sufferer will react differently to what is normally expected with manipulative, avoidant, anxious, disruptive or in some other way maladaptive response and attitude. Historically this has been seen as NOT a mental health issue, but rather a quirk of personality. More recently it has become common to group personality disorders as mental health issues, partly because of an increased recognition that personal psychological development contributes to the disorders being formed. The psychoanalytic viewpoint is that childhood events and disruptions are key to the formation of maladaptive patterns which characterise these so called disorders.
Sufferers should always maintain close contact and supervision from medical personnel such as their GP or community mental health group. Private therapy should complement this provision, not attempt to replace it.
NICE recommend psychotherapy, preferably twice a week for people with personality disorders. This is often provided as part of NHS care in times of crisis or acute presentation. In practice however many people suffering from personality disorders have to seek support via the private sector, especially if they are high functioning and not is a state of acute crisis (and thus are a priority). DBT is a frequently NICE recommended option. In fact DBT is considered the “gold standard” for under-controlled personality disorders, with RO-DBT an additional complementing model for overcontrolled cases.
Psychotherapy often looks at the relationship between people with personality disorders and events, people, environments and relatonships, seeking to analyse, inform and psychoeducate the sufferer in order to allow them to function more normally and happily, and to enable them to relearn the maladaptive patterns. In effect the objective is to take the unhelpful pattern, and replace it with a new more productive and helpful pattern which enables the client to get their desired outcomes.
Types of psychotherapy
The main goals of the psychotherapy are around analysis, identification, understanding and psychoeducation, therefore forms of psychological therapy with an emphasis on these functions are helpful. Examples would include CBASP or other cognitive behavioural analysis processes with a high degree of situational analysis and relearning.
Also helpful are methods of self analysis such as those learnt in active mindfulness, and methods of lifestyle coaching and design.
Methods like meditation and relaxation therapy might also be of use in addressing the “knock on” effects of having a personality disorder, which might include anxiety, stress, depression and anger. More information on managing these are listed elsewhere on this site.
Sufferers may also suffer from bipolar, anxiety disorders, depression, anxiety, OCD, substance misuse or dependence, relationship difficulties, life function issues and general problems with well being and these may need additional therapy support.
Stuart is a psychodynamic and cognitive behavioural analyst, stress counsellor and clinical hypnotherapist who is also qualified and registered to provide psychotherapy, psychology, coaching and counselling. He has also completed post qualification training in additional analysis and psychotherapy methods and mindfulness.
Anxious personality disorder, general personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, personality disorder, bipolar disorder, depression anxiety disorder, anxiety, mental health, psychotherapy, CBT, CBASP, counselling, therapy, therapist, psychology, psychologist, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Falkirk, Dublin, analysis, analyst, cognitive behavioural therapy, cognitive behavioural analysis, situational analysis, psychoeducation
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