Uncommon Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder | The Ranch

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Uncommon Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder

January 31, 2017 Articles,Mental Health
BPD Signs

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a mental health condition noted for the presence of severe and unpredictable mood changes, impulsive behavior and involvement in volatile personal relationships. The condition has a total of nine possible main symptoms. However, BPD frequently occurs in combination with other serious mental illnesses. Among other things, this means that a broad range of uncommon symptoms can potentially appear in any given person affected by the disorder.

Core BPD Symptoms

To receive a BPD diagnosis from a doctor, you must have at least five of the nine core symptoms that set the condition apart from other illnesses. These primary symptoms of borderline personality disorder are:

  • Extreme mood changes that last anywhere from minutes to hours
  • Intense outburst of anger
  • Repeated involvement in risky, impulsive behaviors
  • Lack of a stable or clear self-image
  • Intense, often unreasonable fear of being abandoned
  • Recurring involvement in turbulent relationships
  • A recurring sense of emptiness
  • Paranoia or loss of touch with reality, especially in stressful situations
  • Involvement in suicidal behavior or self-harming behavior not intended to kill

Uncommon BPD Symptoms

The overwhelming majority of people with BPD also experience at least one other diagnosable mental illness. Common examples of these co-occurring conditions include some other form of personality disorder, an anxiety disorder, bulimia or another eating disorder, major depression or another depressive disorder, some form of bipolar disorder and some form of substance use disorder (substance abuse/addiction). The presence of so many possible problems has some very real consequences. First, it means that, unless they’re careful, doctors can easily mistake the symptoms of borderline personality disorder for the symptoms of other conditions. It also means that BPD can manifest in vastly different ways in different people. In addition, the long list of co-occurring conditions can lead to a nearly endless combination of uncommon symptoms you wouldn’t necessarily associate with BPD. For example, a person with the condition may:

  • Have food habits that strongly resemble those found in a person with bulimia or anorexia
  • Experience mood alterations that closely mimic major depression or less severe forms of depression
  • Experience the potentially extreme manic episodes found in people with bipolar disorder
  • Experience recurring panic attacks like a person with panic disorder
  • Get involved in alcohol abuse or virtually any form of drug/medication abuse

Bear in mind that multiple illnesses can overlap in any given case. For the sake of accuracy, it might be best to view all cases of borderline personality disorder as uncommon in one way or another.

Resources

National Institute of Mental Health: Borderline Personality Disorder https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/borderline-personality-disorder/index.shtml

National Alliance on Mental Illness: Borderline Personality Disorder https://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions/Borderline-Personality-Disorder

Psychiatric Times: Comorbidity in Borderline Personality Disorder http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/borderline-personality/comorbidities-borderline-personality-disorder

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