Narcissistic and Histrionic Personality Disorder

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Narcissistic and Histrionic Personality Disorder

Narcissistic and Histrionic Personality Disorder

Each of us has a personality or group of characteristics or traits which influence the way we think, feel, and behave. These make us a unique individual. Someone may be described as having a 'personality disorder' if their personal characteristics cause regular and long term problems in the way they cope with life and interact with other people. It's possible that some people with these disorders never come into contact with mental health services. Those who are given a diagnosis of personality disorder may feel that they are being blamed or criticized or that they are somehow responsible for their problems. There are a number of types of personality disorders. They are generally present from a fairly early age. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV), a guide to diagnosis, divides personality disorders into three clusters: A) odd/eccentric

paranoid
schizoid
schizotypal
B) dramatic/erratic
antisocial
borderline
histrionic
narcissistic
C) anxious/inhibited
dependent
avoidant
obsessive-compulsive
Etiological Factors
Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD):
The etiology of this disorder is unknown. Researchers have identified childhood developmental factors and parenting behaviors that may contribute to the disorder (Stone, 1997): •An oversensitive temperament at birth

Overindulgence and overvaluation by parents
Valued by parents as a means to regulate their own self-esteem •Excessive admiration that is never balanced with realistic feedback •Unpredictable or unreliable care giving from parents
Severe emotional abuse in childhood
Being praised for perceived exceptional looks or talents by adults •Learning manipulative behaviors from parents

Histrionic Personality Disorder (HPD):
There has been little research on the etiology of HPD. It has been suggested that HPD may share a genetic disposition toward impulsivity or sensation seeking with Antisocial Personality Disorder. It has also been suggested that HPD is (in part) a severe, maladaptive variant of the personality dimensions of extraversion and neuroticism. Extraversion includes the facets of excitement seeking, gregariousness, and positive emotionality, and neuroticism includes the facets of angry hostility. Environmental and socio cultural factors, however, may also play a significant role in the development of HPD (Blacker, 1991). Symptoms

Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD):
A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following: (1) Has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements).

(2) Is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love.
(3) Believes that he or she is "special" and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions). (4) Requires excessive admiration.

(5) Has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations. (6) Is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends.

(7) Lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others.
(8) Is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her. (9) Shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes (American Psychiatric Association, 1994).
Histrionic Personality Disorder (HPD):
A pervasive pattern of excessive emotionality and attention seeking,...
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