Paranoid Personality Disorder

Topics: Psychotherapy, Schizophrenia, Avoidant personality disorder Pages: 5 (1740 words) Published: April 28, 2013
Paranoid personality disorder is a disorder characterized by mistrust and suspicion. It is a very unusual disorder that has barely been researched; thus, it is not understood very well. However, it can sometimes be treated with psychotherapy. Paranoid personality disorder has been characterized by “Mr. Queeg”, who has had several complications regarding his disorder. People like Queeg are often regarded as “crazy” and “unacceptable” to people who don't understand. I think that this is an eye-opening disorder which most people simply disregard.

Paranoid Personality Disorder
Imagine seeing everything around you as a threat. Everyone is trying to undermine you and your well-being. You cannot trust anyone, and you are always afraid of people plotting against you. This is paranoid personality disorder. Paranoid personality disorder is a crippling disorder that shows itself through distrust and suspicion. It can be very difficult to treat given the nature of the disorder, but it is possible. Although only a fraction of a percentage of the population has it, it is a sizable problem that the public has to deal with. Description of the Disorder

Personality disorders are defined as behaviors that deviate from social and cultural norms.

Within the category of personality disorders, there is paranoid personality disorder. People with this

disorder see the actions of others as a scheme to undermine them. Most people with paranoid

personality disorder have little to no close relationships. Often times, spouses of the patients will leave

because of the overwhelming distrust. The official guidelines for diagnosing a patient is as such:

1) suspects, without sufficient basis, that others are exploiting, harming, or deceiving him or her 2) is preoccupied with unjustified doubts about the loyalty or trustworthiness of friends or associates is reluctant to confide in others because of unwarranted fear that the information will be used maliciously against him or her reads hidden demeaning or threatening meanings into benign remarks or events persistently bears grudges, i.e., is unforgiving of insults, injuries, or slights percieves attacks on his or her character or reputation that are not apparent to others and is quick to react angrily or to counterattack has recurrent suspicions, without justification, regarding fidelity of spouse or sexual partner (American Psychiatric Association, 2000).

A person must have at least four of these criteria to be classified as paranoid. Only approximately one half of a percent of the general population has been diagnosed with paranoid personality disorder (Paranoid Personality Disorder, 2010). However rare this condition may be, it actually has been recorded in every edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental

Disorders. Thus, it is regarded by most as a legitimate disorder. According to research, paranoid personality disorder has been correlated with certain families. Family trees with other psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia and delusional disorder, often have more people with paranoid personality disorder than families without those psychotic disorders (Paranoid Personality Disorder, 2010). In fact, paranoid patients often have various symptoms of schizophrenia. Unlike schizophrenia, paranoid personality disorder seems to show itself more in men than in women. No specific cause for this disorder is known. However, previous psychoanalytic models tend to focus their attention on projection: “the disavowing of one's own aggressive feelings and thoughts by projecting them onto another person” (O'Donohue, 2007). This has some valid qualities about it. However, more recent models can be used to explain paranoid personality disorder. Things such as attentional biases, like being too focused on threats that may or may not be there, and interpretive biases, like misinterpreting a statement as derogatory, can explain...

References: American Psychiatric Association. (2000). Diagnostic and statistical
manual of mental disorders (4th ed., text rev.). Washington, DC: Author.
O 'Donohue, W., Fowler, K.A., Lilienfeld, S.O. (2007). Paranoid Personality Disorder, Personality Disorders (pp. 41-58). Retrieved from
Paranoid Personality Disorder (2010). Rertrieved March 10, 2013 from
Psychotherapies (2007). Retrieved March 10, 2013 from
Ross, R. (2001). DSM-IV-TR Case Studies: A Clinical Guide to Differential Diagnosis. Retrieved from
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