Borderline personality disorder is a serious mental health disease characterized by a persistent pattern of instability in emotions, self-image and interpersonal relationships.
People with borderline personality disorder are usually very impulsive and often engage in self-harming behaviors such as cutting and binge eating. They are at higher risk for suicide attempts.
Specific Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder:
- Frantic efforts to avoid real or imagined abandonment.
- A pattern of unstable and intense interpersonal relationships, characterized by alternating between extremes of idealization and devaluation.
- Identity disturbance, such as a significant and persistent unstable self-image or sense of self.
- Impulsivity in at least two areas that are potentially self-damaging (e.g., spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, binge eating).
- Recurrent suicidal behavior, gestures, or threats, or self-mutilating behavior.
- Emotional instabilitydue to significant reactivity of mood (e.g., intense irritability or anxiety usually lasting a few hours and only rarely more than a few days).
- Chronic feelings of emptiness.
- Inappropriate intense angeror difficulty controlling anger (e.g., frequent displays of temper, constant anger, recurrent physical fights)
- Transient, stress-related paranoid thoughts or severe dissociative symptoms.
Long term treatment with a combination of mood-stabilizing medications and talk therapy such as dialectical behavior therapy (DBT). In order to be effective, a good therapeutical alliance that can withstand the patient’s volatile interpersonal relationship patterns is needed.