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Personality Disorder Treatment

What do you think of when you think of a personality disorder? Is it someone acting like entirely different people at different moments? Maybe it’s someone with no feelings and a cruel personality. You might know these conditions aren’t that clearcut, stereotypical, or simple, because your loved one has one, or you have one yourself – around 9% of all Americans do.

At SUN Columbus, we understand the complexities of personality disorders and the people diagnosed with them, and we also know how difficult it can be to find help. We’re here to make that help more accessible, and empower individuals with personality disorders to live rewarding lives where their condition doesn’t control them. Our personality disorder treatment can help you and your loved ones find joy and stability. 

What We Treat: Personality Disorder Care at SUN Columbus

Having a personality disorder comes with unique challenges. It can be very discouraging. After all, who wants a disorder to be their personality?

That doesn’t have to be the case, but it can often feel that way, both for people with the disorder and the people around them. Personality disorders impact every aspect of life, including behavior, thought patterns, interactions with other people, and self-identity. People with them often don’t realize there’s anything disordered about their behavior, either.

Personality disorders are lifelong, symptoms are persistent, and they come with negative consequences. People living with them often experience unstable relationships, fluctuating work situations, and a distorted sense of self. There is no “cure,” but treatment will make the symptoms more manageable.

SUN Columbus understands how personality disorders differ from other conditions, and is well-versed in the care needed to treat them effectively. Each personality disorder is different too, and one-size-fits-all treatment isn’t good enough. At SUN Columbus, your treatment plan will be customized to you, empowering you to overcome your personality disorder’s grip on your life.

How We Treat and Manage Personality Disorders at SUN Columbus

While treatment for personality disorders isn’t easy, it is helpful. One of the first steps of treatment is helping patients understand that what they say and do can hurt others and negatively impact their own lives. 

The most effective treatment is psychotherapy. At SUN Columbus, we utilize cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) at the core of our treatment. Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), which focuses on managing emotions healthily, is also a major component of treatment. Different therapists specialize in additional methods, and we will work with you to find what treatment approach fits your needs best. Medication can be helpful for those living with anxiety, depression, mood swings, and/or psychosis alongside their personality disorder, which is common, and we can prescribe it as necessary.

SUN Columbus offers a full continuum of care, with residential being the highest. Partial hospitalization is the next highest, followed by intensive outpatient and outpatient. Which is best for you depends on your unique situation, and can be determined through one of our no-cost care assessments.

Sometimes, loved ones are searching for treatment for individuals in dire circumstances, where the potential patient either will not or cannot look for care themselves. It can be scary to trust a facility with the well-being of your loved one in a moment of crisis, but rest assured, SUN Columbus’s staff are experts in crisis care, are available for you 24/7, and will treat your loved one with respect and kindness.

How Personality Disorders Are Diagnosed, and Why They Sometimes Aren’t

Personality disorders are officially diagnosed through the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) criteria. A mental health professional must evaluate someone to be able to diagnose them with a specific condition. They’ll analyze that person’s ways of thinking about themselves and others, responding emotionally, relating to other people, and controlling their behavior. If there’s long-term dysfunction in at least two of those areas, a personality disorder diagnosis may be appropriate.

Diagnoses can be tricky, because symptoms can align with other more common conditions, such as depression and anxiety. While each type of personality disorder varies, as does its diagnostic criteria, they also share similarities that make pinpointing an exact diagnosis difficult. This process also requires the individual with the suspected disorder to agree to treatment in the first place, which can also be a challenge. Because of all of this, experts believe personality disorders may be underdiagnosed.

sun columbus personality disorder treatment

Types of Personality Disorders and Symptoms

There are currently ten different personality disorders in the DSM-5. They’re split into three different categories:

  • Cluster A, which includes schizoid, schizotypal, and paranoid personality disorders. These all involve eccentric behavior and a lack of interest in interacting with others.
  • Cluster B, which includes histrionic, antisocial, borderline, and narcissistic personality disorders. Individuals with these conditions all have trouble regulating extreme emotions and behavior, and react to experiences dramatically
  • Cluster C, which consists of avoidant, dependent, and obsessive-compulsive personality disorders. These are all characterized by intense anxiety.

While each condition is unique, some symptoms can overlap, and sometimes people have more than one personality disorder. 

Schizoid Personality Disorder

People with this condition typically don’t have an interest in others and forming relationships with them. They choose to be alone, have challenges socializing and experiencing emotion, and find little pleasure in most activities.

Schizotypal Personality Disorder

Those with schizotypal personality disorder tend to have unique thinking patterns, and may find a deeper meaning in mundane events and situations. Sometimes, they experience auditory hallucinations and believe their thoughts can influence people and the world around them. They have “beyond the norm” beliefs, and often behave inappropriately in social situations. Schizotypal personality disorder is different than schizophrenia, but they have some commonalities. 

Paranoid Personality Disorder

Paranoid personality disorder is characterized by a deep suspicion and mistrust in every area of life. These people will consistently doubt others’ motivations and loyalty, find personal attacks where there aren’t any, and rarely feel a sense of security. 

Histrionic Personality Disorder

People with histrionic personality disorder’s self-worth depends on the attention they receive from others, and they’ll go to great lengths to get it. They’re often dramatic and emotional, but these emotions are shallow and change quickly. They’re easily influenced, and may feel like they’re closer to people than they actually are. 

Antisocial Personality Disorder

The outdated terms “sociopath” and “psychopath” fall under this condition. These people have little concern for other people and rules. They often fail to follow unspoken social guidelines and get in trouble with the law. They also rarely care about the consequences of their actions, are impulsive, and may even be aggressive.

Borderline Personality Disorder

People with borderline personality disorder have an extreme fear of abandonment, intense emotions they have trouble regulating, and a confused sense of self. They often feel empty, don’t know who they are, and have unstable relationships. They tend to get deeply attached to one person, have an extreme and varying opinion of them, and experience paranoia about them leaving. Sometimes, they will “test” the loyalty of the people who care for them, even to the point of threatening self-harm or suicide. It’s often more than a threat, too. Around 70% of people with borderline personality disorder attempt suicide, and as many as 10% of those with the disorder will die by suicide. This makes it the highest suicide rate of any mental health condition.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

People with this condition believe they’re superior to others, and often have little regard for other people and their feelings. They need others to look up to them and might exaggerate their accomplishments to look more impressive. They want attention and adoration and believe they should receive special treatment, even if there’s no reason for it. Despite their apparent superiority complex, people with this condition are usually insecure.

Avoidant Personality Disorder

These individuals have a fear of judgment and rejection so intense that it makes them avoid interacting with others. They’re very quiet in social situations, and while they often wish they could interact with others, their feelings of inadequacy and anxiety get in the way. They’ll also avoid trying new things because they anticipate failing and being humiliated. 

Dependent Personality Disorder

People with dependent personality disorder feel like they must be taken care of by others. They’re highly indecisive, need help with most things, and fear being left alone. They have low self-confidence and feel the need to please others, even if they’re being mistreated. 

Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder

Different from obsessive-compulsive disorder, people with this condition experience similar symptoms without realizing they’re dysfunctional. These people want constant control, are inflexible, and have such an intense need for perfection that it negatively impacts their lives. It can keep them from finishing projects and spending time with others, and they’re usually stubborn.

Causes of Personality Disorders: Who Do They Affect?

There’s still a lot experts don’t know about personality disorders. We haven’t pinpointed the exact causes yet, especially for each individual condition. What we do know is genetics and environmental factors both play a role. People with personality disorders are scientifically proven to have experienced more of the following than the average person:

  • A chaotic family life
  • Lack of support
  • Discrimination
  • Low socioeconomic status
  • Neglect
  • Bereavement
  • Verbal abuse
  • Trauma


Find Therapy and Treatments for Personality Disorder

At SUN Columbus, we’re solving unmet needs through several different levels of care. We offer personality disorder treatment for both adults and adolescents. Our skilled therapists will deliver treatment customized to you, and our onsite pharmacy can handle any medication you need during and after your time with us. Give us a call at 614-706-2786, and take the first step to healing.



What is the most effective treatment for personality disorders?

Specific treatment varies based on the individual and personality disorder, but dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) is commonly used and proven effective.

How can I help someone with a personality disorder?

The best thing you can do is try to convince that person to seek some kind of treatment, but that can be difficult. Set clear boundaries with them and let them know when what they do is harmful, but also speak to them with patience and empathy. Seek to understand their thoughts and feelings even if they don’t make sense to you, and learn more about their personality disorder. Remember that the person you care about is more than their condition, and remind them of the good aspects of their personality too.

Treat Yourself to Recovery!

The capable team at SUN Columbus has been serving our community for years. Reach out to begin your journey to recovery.


SUN Behavioral Columbus

900 E Dublin Granville Rd
Columbus, OH, 43229

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