Understanding Personality

Personality can be hard to define. In the therapeutic space, personality is how your personal traits and your patterns of behavior come together to create your character. Our personalities also affect how we relate to others. The hallmarks of a healthy personality include the ability to maintain equilibrium in the face of strife and sustain even-handed relationships with others.

What is a Personality Disorder?

A personality disorder is characterized by an inability to adjust to even small change. People with this type of disorder do not acclimate to the fluctuations or needs of others. Oftentimes, patients with a personality disorder think nothing is wrong with them. They tend to maintain very narrow lives and sometimes have very limited social interaction with others.

Spotting a Personality Disorder

Only a mental health professional can spot and diagnose a personality disorder. These disorders are nuanced and can change overtime as people age, becoming more difficult to identify. Any quirks in behavior must be so severe that they interfere with the patient’s ability to conduct a normal life.

What Causes a Personality Disorder?

There is much discussion in the mental health profession as to whether personality disorders stem from genetics or childhood trauma. Many believe it may be some combination of the two, with genetic causes getting triggered by trauma. Whatever the cause, treating a personality disorder is essential for creating a better quality of life in a patient.