All You Need to Know About Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Narcissistic personality disorder is a mental disorder in which people develop inflated sense of importance and they feel as if they are the biggest celebrity in the world. Such people might seem extremely confident, but deep down inside, they are insecure and even a small criticism or rejection can have a great impact on them.

People having this personality disorder find it difficult to maintain healthy relationships in personal and professional life. Therefore just like any other mental disorder, narcissistic personality disorder should not be taken lightly and efforts must be made for its treatment before its too late.

Symptoms

Some of the most common symptoms of this personality disorder are mentioned below:

  • False sense of extreme importance
  • Extreme sensitivity to criticism and rejection
  • Lack of empathy for others
  • Exhibition of extreme confidence and even arrogance
  • Anger and agitation on minor issues
  • Unreal standards of success, power, beauty etc.
  • Over exaggeration of personal achievements
  • Selfishness
  • Jealousy towards others

The negative symptoms of this disorder such as jealousy, insecurity and fear of rejection can easily lead to depression and in extreme cases, can also lead to suicidal thoughts.

Diagnosis

Diagnosing someone with narcissistic personality disorder can be difficult because such people apparently seem very confident and their ego does not allow them to look for help even though they me be torn from the inside and feeling extremely insecure.

Criteria mentioned in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), published by the American Psychiatric Association is normally used by psychiatrists to diagnose someone with this personality disorder.

Causes

The exact cause of this disorder is now known. However, experts suggest that following scenarios can increase the chances of someone developing this disorder:

  • Extreme pampering in childhood
  • Extreme criticism in childhood
  • Family history of personality or mental disorders

People usually develop this disorder in their early adulthood and can have it for the rest of their lives if left untreated.

Treatment

Medication is only prescribed in extreme scenarios when this disorder leads to depression. However for the most part, this personality disorder can be treated with the help of psychotherapy.

The therapist will mainly focus on making the patient realize the importance of other people’s feelings and how to have a positive but realistic self image.

Such a therapy helps the patient develop deeper and more meaningful relationships with others and themselves. Improvements can be noticed in behavior and self image after a few sittings.

Moreover, adopting pets and taking care of them also helps you become more considerate about needs of others even if they are animals.

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