Within the personality disorder spectrum, there are 10 medically defined disorders, influencing those antisocial, narcissistic, obsessive and unstable emotions, behaviours, outlooks and thoughts. Acknowledged by mental health specialists, personality disorders are likely to develop through late adolescence to early adulthood, where symptoms and potential mental health problems will present themselves.

What are personality disorders?

Personality disorders can be defined as persistent patterns of behaviour and thinking that deviate significantly from cultural norms, causing emotional instability and difficulties.  These can manifest in an array of challenges related to everyday responsibilities, and maintaining close, meaningful relationships often becomes an uphill task. Each person’s experience is as unique as their personality, making this a complex field that demands a personalised approach to treatment.

One of the challenging aspects of personality disorders is the diverse spectrum they encompass. This vast spectrum can impact both physical and mental health in myriad ways, leading to a wide variety of symptoms and experiences.

As there are a large proportion of personality disorders, all causing different impacts on physical and mental health, it is imperative that an accurate diagnosis is provided. To ensure that effective treatment of personality disorders can be offered, evaluation is prioritised here at Asana Lodge. Those experiencing a misdiagnosis or untreated personality disorder will find it difficult to surpass symptoms, reducing the value of everyday life.


The types of personality disorders

As touched on above, there are currently 10 identified personality disorders, linked to mental health and cognitive abnormalities. Categorised into three clusters for their characteristics, it is important that the types of personality disorders are differentiated and understood, especially when considering treatment options. See below for a general overview of each personality disorder type.

Cluster A

This cluster of personality disorders is categorised for their abnormal thinking. Personality disorders which fall under this cluster include paranoid personality disorder, schizoid personality disorder and schizotypal personality disorder. People who fall within this cluster of personality disorders will commonly experience strange beliefs, detachment or dissociation, and suspicion. Symptoms can include limited emotional expression, the wrongful reading of behaviours, an inability to form relationships with others and social anxiety.

Cluster B

Cluster B personality disorders are associated with highly emotional or unstable/erratic behaviours or feelings. Antisocial personality disorder, borderline personality disorder, narcissistic personality disorder and histrionic personality disorder fall within this category. Individuals experiencing this form of personality disorder will experience unstable emotions, heightened or low self-importance, overdramatised behaviours and psychotic episodes. Symptoms can include manipulation, paranoia, reckless behaviour, impulsivity, excessive admiration and perceived attention-seeking behaviours.

Cluster C

Characteristics of this cluster of personality disorders are linked to their anxiety-driven, fearful and overthinking behaviours. Personality disorders, including avoidant personality disorder, dependent personality disorder and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder, fall within this category.

Individuals will likely experience high sensitivity, fear of being alone, and difficulties in changing thinking patterns and behaviours. Symptoms include extreme perfectionism, desperation and difficulties in maintaining close relationships.

By considering the above categories, it is easy to see the complexity of personality disorders. There are a vast number of symptoms to look out for, which can overlap with one another or co-occurring mental health conditions. As a result of this, it is imperative that comprehensive evaluations are made, to ensure that people with personality disorders can receive suitable and effective treatment.


Personality disorders and mental health conditions

People with personality disorders are at high risk of developing an associated mental health condition. It is also likely that a mental health condition will already exist when symptoms of a personality disorder present themselves.

Commonly experienced mental health conditions include anxiety disorders, impulse disorders and mood disorders, including depression and bipolar. Likewise, the advancement of substance use disorders is also high, linked to self-medication.

The association of personality disorders and mental health conditions are high, down to the mutual identities, classed as brain disorders. Individuals who have functional abnormalities in the brain, along with genetic influences and emotional trauma, are likely to experience a dual diagnosis. Higher susceptibility to abnormal thoughts or feelings is present, resulting in a change in behaviour, presented through abnormal personalities and/or psychological changes.

Through a high-risk classification, it is important that those suffering from a standalone personality disorder, mental health condition or a dual diagnosis receive effective treatment and mental health services.


The risk of an undiagnosed personality disorder

Personality disorders are extremely complex. With differing underlying causations and symptoms, it can be challenging to diagnose an exact disorder. However, there are a number of risks present with undiagnosed or misdiagnosed personality disorders.

Without sourcing the correct form and level of treatment and support, disorders can progress. Here, there is a great likelihood that chronic mental health issues will develop in unison, categorised as a dual diagnosis. Likewise, comparison or dissociative disorders can also emerge.

By continuing to live with an undiagnosed personality disorder, concerns lie with an individual’s ability to cope with the symptoms. With little knowledge surrounding the characterises of personality disorder, again, a dual diagnosis can form through substance abuse. Many individuals will turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with what they are experiencing.

To ensure that accurate diagnoses of personality disorders can be achieved, here at Asana Lodge, we place significant importance on the initial evaluation. From evaluating biological, social, psychological and spiritual factors, to brain functioning analysis, a brain-body approach will be followed when recommending treatment.

Personality Disorders - a photograph of a woman looking out rainy window

Treating personality disorders here at Asana Lodge

At Asana Lodge, we approach the topic of personality disorders with profound compassion and understanding, always mindful that each person we encounter brings their unique journey and struggles. We realise that these disorders represent not just clinical definitions, but also profound personal challenges that deeply affect individuals’ lives and their interactions with the world around them.

Here at Asana Lodge, we place a strong emphasis on careful and thorough evaluation. Our empathetic tone and approach stem from the awareness that we’re not merely dealing with disorders but with unique individuals, each with their hopes, dreams, fears, and potential. Our promise at Asana Lodge is to treat every person with the compassion, respect, and professional expertise they deserve.

We also understand that inaccurate diagnosis or untreated personality disorders can make it exceedingly challenging for individuals to navigate their symptoms, which in turn, can diminish the quality of their everyday lives. Our goal is not only to alleviate these symptoms, but also to restore a sense of control, hope, and normalcy in our patients’ lives.

We blend both holistic and traditional methodologies to achieve the best possible outcomes for our patients. This philosophy reflects our understanding that recovery is a deeply personal journey, requiring more than just a one-size-fits-all solution.

Holistic treatments recognise that mental and physical health are intricately linked and cannot be separated. As such, our holistic methods range from yoga and meditation for mental tranquillity, mindfulness techniques to ground oneself in the present, to dietary advice to support physical well-being.

We also incorporate a host of traditional therapies into our treatment programmes, as they provide proven ways to address specific disorders. These include (but are not limited to):

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) to help identify, work through and manage problematic thoughts and feelings.
  • Dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) to aid with emotion regulation.
  • Eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) to help process and recover from past experiences, particularly effective for trauma-related disorders.

We provide a truly personalised approach by creating individualised treatment plans for each person. These plans are devised based on the initial assessments and are continuously adjusted in response to personal progress and changing needs.


Reach Out Today

If you’re currently experiencing a change in your behaviour which is negatively impacting your life, or you’re witnessing a personality disorder consume a loved one’s persona, we can help. Contact our team today for more information on treating a personality disorder, along with the initial evaluation process.