The best way to manage mental illnesses is to receive the proper treatment in good time since it only gets worse if the illness goes untreated for a long period. However, some mental illnesses are easier to diagnose and treat than others. Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is one of the most misdiagnosed mental illnesses and is often confused with Bipolar disorder. The two have similar symptoms since people with these disorders have trouble controlling their emotions which can result in destructive behaviour and extreme personality shifts. Some suggest that Borderline personality disorder is in the Bipolar spectrum but experts state that they are different.
Borderline Personality Disorder vs Bipolar Disorder
Studies have also found that around 20% of type 2 Bipolar disorder receive a Borderline personality disorder. However, the two have a lot of different symptoms. For instance, Bipolar disorder is in the spectrum of mood disorders characterized by major shifts in mood. Borderline personality disorder (BPD), on the other hand, is in the spectrum of personality disorders marked by instability in behaviours, relationships, functioning, mood, and self-image. Bipolar Disorder: Types, Causes And Symptoms
Despite being often misdiagnosed, Borderline personality disorder is one of the most common mental illnesses. There are a number of factors that can cause BPD. These include:
Borderline personality disorder mainly originates from extreme traumatic experiences. Nearly 71% of people who have been diagnosed with BPD have reportedly experienced some kind of trauma during their childhood such as abuse and neglect. These experiences lead to lifelong fear and distress that can cause BPD as a maladaptive response.
Having a close family member who suffers from BPD could increase your chances of developing the condition since Borderline personality disorder has a strong genetic component. Studies have found that 42% of BPD cases could be traced to genetic causes. It also affects young adults more than older adults.
Change In Brain Function
Changes in the brain can lead to mental health issues such as BPD. The changes can influence the way you control your emotions and lead to impulsive behaviour. Research suggests that people with BPD have less volume in parts of the brain that controls emotions and stress such as the hippocampus, amygdala, and medial temporal lobes.
Borderline personality disorder affects your behaviour, emotions and relationships. Though someone with Borderline personality disorder can have some similar symptoms to Bipolar disorder, most of the signs and symptoms are very distinct and specific to this disorder. They include:
- Intense fear of abandonment
- Extreme mood swings
- Suicidal thoughts and self-harm
- Unstable toxic relationships, mostly idealizing someone
- Impulsive behaviour, such as gambling, reckless driving, unsafe sex, and spending sprees
- Long periods of stress, paranoia and loss of contact with reality
- Changes in self-identity
- Feelings of emptiness
- Anger issues Tips To Tame Your Temper
People suffering from BPD can easily get triggered by certain situations that may seem absolutely normal to others. Additionally, triggers vary from one person to another. If your loved one has BPD, it’s necessary to be aware of their triggers so you can avoid them. Here are some common things that can be a trigger:
- Rejection in relationships
- Resurfaced traumatic childhood event
- Job loss
One of the best ways to treat BPD is by identifying what your triggers are and then avoiding them. This will lessen the episodes and enable you to get help in a healthier environment. You can then seek specialized help such as
BPD is mainly treated through therapy. There are a number of specialized therapy that are effective in helping people with BPD such as
- Mentalization-based treatment – this type of treatment focuses on developing an increased capacity to imagine thoughts and feelings in the patients’ minds and in the minds of others to improve their interpersonal skills
- Schema-based treatment – this helps to identify unhealthy patterns that the patient may have developed in their childhood as a coping mechanism
- Dialectal behaviour treatment – this is a type of cognitive behavioural therapy that uses mindfulness strategies to change negative thinking patterns and make positive changes.
People with BPD should also prioritize their self-care as this can help boost their self-esteem and self-love. In particular, they should practice mindful techniques such as yoga and meditation, stay active to keep their mind distracted, and keep a good support system.
There are no drugs that have been approved to treat Borderline personality disorder. However, doctors can recommend medication to help with the symptoms as well as therapy. In some cases, the person may need to be hospitalized for closer observation and to avoid harming themselves.
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