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Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD)
Narcissistic Personality Disorder, or NPD, is one of a cluster of Personality Disorders that includes border-line personality disorder, antisocial personality disorder and histrionic personality disorder. Patients suffering from NPD exhibit a pattern of traits and characteristics that display self-infatuation, self-obsession to the exclusion of all others and an egotistic and often extreme pursuit of self-gratification, ambition and dominance over others. dominance and ambition. This disorder was first diagnosed by Sigmund Freud. It includes a wide range of symptom severity from mild, reactive or transient to the most severe permanent personality disorder. Narcissists are classified as ‘Cerebral’, obtaining self-gratification from academic or intellectual achievements, or ‘Somatic’, deriving gratification from their physical appearance or prowess, or from sexual conquests. Narcissists need adulation, and worship from others, but they exhibit no feelings or signs of empathy toward others. Children of narcissistic parents often suffer from a lack of confidence and habitual shame at never ‘getting it right’, since narcissists feel they are always right and often treat others as if they are inferior. The narcissistic personality preys on those around him and exploits others for his own gain. The narcissist attempts to control and manipulate others and must always be the center of attention. Narcissistic Personality Disorder has been diagnosed in infancy, childhood and early adolescence, and is typically attributed to abuse or trauma in childhood, inflicted by parents or others in authority, or even by peers. Often, when the narcissist learns about his disorder, he believes he can change. This is especially true when his world and relationships are in jeopardy. The narcissist typically admits his illness when he is abandoned, destitute, or devastated by loss. This may be followed by a period of change, which fades, and is followed by reversion to his previous behavior. Many doctors report a cyclical remission and repetition of behavior, and while narcissistic patients respond to treatment, they usually suffer chronic, lifetime, symptoms of this disorder. Narcissism will sometimes lessen with age and many patients exhibit narcissistic patterns that are reactive and transient, rather than persistent. In these patients, episodes are typically brought on by stress, or the loss of a person or environment that gratified the ego of the narcissist.
What are the symptoms?
How is it diagnosed and treated?
Narcissistic Personality Disorder is often coincident with other mental health disorders. It can occur with or show symptoms similar to Histrionic Personality Disorder, Antisocial Personality Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder, Schizotypal Personality Disorder, or personality changes from general medical conditions, or chronic substance use. Doctors will look for the following signs:
Treatment(s) can include:
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However, for many individuals with bipolar disorder, it's more difficult to recognize the signs of an impending manic episode. After all, a manic episode of bipolar disorder can be mistaken in some cases - especially in the very early formation -- for the lifting of the corresponding mood swing of the depression.
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