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Personality disorders are representations of the wayward behavior that make a person display a distinct array of characteristics. Personality disorders often affect people who do not have any knowledge that they have the disorder. Professionals also display difficulties in terms of the effective diagnosis of the disorders. Diagnosis of the personality disorders is a daunting task since the majority of the symptoms overlap and extend to the rest of the disorders. Narcissist personality disorder entails malice (Davison & Neale, 2001). Diagnosis of the disorder follows the identification of the character traits that are indicative of the wayward behavior.
Antisocial personality disorder
Diagnosing a personality disorder is not easy due to the lack of a succinct definition of the disorder and its aspects that define its occurrence (Davison & Neale, 2001). Lack of a set of standards by which to base the diagnoses for the personality disorder leads to the exercising of personal judgment by the medical professional. In this case, the professionals will always arrive at different decisions owing to the subjective nature of the decision-making process. Therefore, there is a chance of the personality disorder being misdiagnosed.
Antisocial personality disorder is a culmination of deliberate and consistent disregard of the societal values and seclusion of an individual from the rest of the members. Antisocial personality disorder focuses on the creation of a secluded world whereby the patients make deliberate efforts of detaching themselves from the society (Davison & Neale, 2001). Antisocial personality disorder can arise from the previous interactions with the society whereby the society disregards or deliberately pushes the person away.
A single even in the lifetime of the patient suffering from the disorder can result in the development of an aversion towards the interaction with the people. Development of the disease follows a gradual process with the exhibition of the aversion to inclusion. Therefore, the diagnosis of the patient ought to focus on the behavior of the patient in relation to the interactions with the rest of the people. Subjective comparison of the behavior of the patient and common trends helps in the succinct determination of whether the person is suffering from the disorder or not (Davison & Neale, 2001).
Davison, G. C., & Neale, J. M. (2001). Abnormal psychology. New York: John Wiley.
Oppositional defiant disorder is a chronic condition in which an individual possesses frequent patterns of arguing, anger, defiance, irritability. In children, it is particularly hard to differentiate a child of strong will, an emotional one, and or with one with oppositional defiant disorder. For a child who is growing or developing, it is normal for them to portray oppositional behavior at stages of development. In most cases, signs of oppositional defiant disorder begin to show in pre-school. Before early teen years is when signs and symptoms of oppositional defiant disorder start being visible. Such defiant behaviors cause the individual to have an impairment in school activities, social activities and also at home (Matthys & Lochman 2011). According to the DSM-5 criteria, the diagnosis of oppositional defiant disorder includes both behavioral and emotional symptoms. Individuals with oppositional defiant disorder have a problem managing their anger. The individuals show signs of losing temper, easily annoyed by others and often angered or resentful.
The individuals with the disorder also argue with adults or people in authority. Such individuals also easily offend others with their defiance. Another sign for an individual with oppositional defiant disorder is that the individuals seem to blame others for mistakes that he or she has. The individuals also choose not to adhere to the rules set by adults whether at home or school. The individuals also tend to be vindictive and spiteful in the things that they do. However, for a child or teenager to be considered to have oppositional defiant disorder, the symptoms needs to be typical compared to the child’s peers (Matthys & Lochman 2011). For a child who is younger than five years old, the symptoms have to be dominant for a period more than six months. For individuals who are above six years old, the symptoms have to occur at least once in a week for a period of at least six months. The level of oppositional defiant disorder is mild, moderate and severe.
Conduct disorder is a condition in which is repetitive and persistent in children, which includes the violation of the basic rights or most ethics that are age-appropriate. Another definition of the behaviors that conduct disorder individuals possess is anti-social behavior. Conduct disorder is considered as the precursor to antisocial personality disorder, and this is because antisocial personality disorder is diagnosed only when the individual is eighteen years old. One of the symptoms of conduct disorder is aggressive behavior that threatens or causes harm to animals or people. The children or teenagers tend to intimidate or bully others and initiate physical fights or be cruel to animals (Hughes 2008). The individuals also tend to show non-aggressive conduct that leads to the destruction of property or loss or property. Another sign or symptom is that the teenagers seem to be deceitful or engage in theft. The theft activities may include stealing from others or breaking into other people’s houses or cars.
The individuals might also have deceitful behaviors like lying to others and conning them. Another sign or symptom is that the teenagers or children have serious problems in violating rules. Some of the examples include engaging in activities that they have been warned against. Most children and teenagers tend to be truant and miss school and running away from home when they should be studying or reading. Many young people who have conduct disorder have trouble expressing empathy and reading social cues. The actions of other individuals tend to be taken by the individuals with the condition with hostility and aggressiveness. Therefore, the response of individuals with conduct disorder tends to be one that will result in conflict. Conduct disorder might also bring about other problems in the victim like substance abuse (Hughes 2008). Other difficulties include school problems, physical injury from fights or accidents and risk-taking behavior.
Antisocial personality disorder is a condition that an individual’s ways of thinking, relating to others or handling situations are destructive and dysfunctional. Most people with antisocial personality disorder have disregard for wrong and right. The individuals, therefore, have no regard for the feelings and wishes of others (Rotgers & Maniacci 2006). Individuals with antisocial personality disorder often manipulate and treat other individuals harshly. The individuals may also violate the law and have no remorse feelings for their actions. The individuals also tend to be deceitful and lie to others with the aim of exploiting them. Another symptom is that the individuals may use charm to manipulate others in order to achieve personal gain. Individuals with the disorder also seem to show a sense of superiority. The individuals may also experience some problems with violence, hostility, and aggression. The individuals also have problems with relationships and tend to have abusive and poor relationships.
The individuals also fail to learn the negative repercussions of their behaviors. During places of work, the individuals may also exhibit irresponsibility in their job positions. Individuals with antisocial personality disorder have risk-taking behaviors, which are unnecessary and or some other dangerous behaviors. Antisocial behaviors may start to be relevant during childhood and may end up being dominant in people who are in their youth, precisely the 20s and 30s (Rotgers & Maniacci 2006). Early signs of the disorder especially in children include social isolation, bullying other students, anger problems, cruelty to animals and poor performance in school. The disorder is considered as a lifetime disorder and the criminal and destructive behavior and may lead to substance abuse. The behaviors may decrease over the period, and it is unclear whether the behaviors reduced due to aging. Personality is a combination of thoughts, behavior, and emotion, which makes everyone unique. Therefore, the personality of an individual grows from when one is a child.
Oppositional defiant disorder, antisocial personality disorder, conduct disorder have a few things in common. One of the common things in the individuals with the three disorders is that they have problems relating to other people. Individuals with any of the three disorders also have problems with managing their anger. Therefore, the individuals tend to be more aggressive and have problems dealing with authority. The victims of the disorders have problems following authority and consistently break the law or defy any rules given to them. The individuals also seem to have an issue when it comes to being deceitful and theft. The individuals lie to others for personal gains and may also engage in conning activities. The defiant behaviors among the individuals are common in all the three disorders. Conduct disorder is considered as the predecessor of antisocial personality disorder.
Antisocial personality disorder is only tested for individuals who are over eighteen years old. Conduct disorder can end up being checked as antisocial personality disorder if the individual reaches the age of eighteen. For oppositional defiant disorder, antisocial personality, and conduct disorder, the main cause of the conditions is genetic or due to the environment. The environment plays a very great role in defining the behavior of individuals, especially in their childhood. A child who has problems with the kind of parenting that she or he is accustomed to may exhibit some of the behaviors in the child (O’Reilly 2005). For example, a child who is not supervised or has to bear with harsh discipline might end up having one of the conditions. Other risk factors that may raise the chances of a child having oppositional defiant disorder or conduct disorder are having problems regulating anger. The child may also be highly emotionally active or living in a family where one of the members has a mental health problem or substance abuse issue.
Hughes, T. L., Crothers, L. M., & Jimerson, S. R. (2008). Identifying, assessing, and treating conduct disorder at school. New York, N.Y: Springer.
Matthys, W., & Lochman, J. E. (2011). Oppositional defiant disorder and conduct disorder in childhood. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
O'Reilly, D. (2005). Conduct disorder and behavioural parent training: Research and practice. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
Rotgers, F., & Maniacci, M. P. (2006). Antisocial personality disorder: A practitioner's guide to comparative treatments. New York: Springer Pub.
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