The Mertha Mo Nyamande Series: Mental Health and Personality Disorders; Psychopathy and Sociopathy

Disorders are often known to display the core characteristics from childhood, things like being cruel to animals and general antisocial behaviours like throwing tantrums By Psychotherapist Mertha Mo Nyamande This week on the Sunday Express: Personality Disorders, Psychopathy and Sociopathy, and the key questions: is there any difference? Personality Disorders (PDs) are defined as “a deeply ingrained pattern of behaviour of a specified kind that deviates markedly from the norms of generally accepted behaviour, typically apparent by the time of adolescence, and causing long-term difficulties in intra and interpersonal relationships or functioning in society.” Common mental health presentations like depression, anxiety and OCD can become PDs because of prolonged nature, and the sufferers start to identify themselves with their lived experiences. PDs are grouped into three categories: Odd / Eccentric (Paranoid and depressive PD, etc), Dramatic, Emotional and Impulsive (Antisocial PD, Emotionally Unstable PD - Borderline/impulsive types, Narcissistic PD) and Anxious (Avoidant, Dependent, and Obsessive-Compulsive PDs). A series of psychological tests are typically conducted over time to provide the most accurate diagnosis to inform on the best type of treatment, although PD diagnosis has been used as an exclusion criterion in some services.

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