What is delusional thinking

Personality Disorders: Diagnosis & Therapy

Those affected often find it difficult to seek help. Many also fail to see that they need support themselves. Often people first seek advice or therapy in their social environment because they cannot cope with the behavior of their loved ones or develop their own emotional problems as a result. The treatment takes some time and is possible in principle.

Pillars of therapy

Psychotherapy (including psychoeducation - promoting understanding of the disorder, training how to deal with it, etc.) as well as sociotherapy, (re) learning social skills, ensuring basic social needs, rehabilitation, are among the pillars of therapy. Among other things, individual attempts are made to try out or learn new ways of behaving and seeing.

In a group psychotherapy, differences between self-perception and perception of others can be made visible, social interaction can be lived in a protected environment and mutual understanding can be promoted.

Depending on the severity of symptoms or other diseases / disorders, medication prescribed by a doctor may be necessary (e.g. to relieve anxiety). Among other things, antidepressants, mood stabilizers or sometimes also antipsychotics are used. These drugs can be used in the context of personality disorders, e.g. against fear, impulse breakthroughs and possible delusional thinking as well as distorted ways of thinking and perceiving.

NoteYour doctor or pharmacist will inform you about effects, side effects and interactions.

The problems with which those affected have to struggle (difficulties regarding closeness / distance, trust, etc.) are mostly reflected in a more difficult treatment path. It is not uncommon for therapy to be discontinued. An essential basis is the trusting relationship that is slowly being built up with the professional helpers.


Various methods have developed within psychotherapy that deal with personality disorders in particular, e.g. transfer-focused psychodynamic psychotherapy (TFP) or special approaches to behavioral schema therapy. Which approach is used also depends on the type of personality disorder. The treatment of the emotionally unstable personality (borderline type) is best researched. This includes dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) and mentalization-based therapy (MBT). For more information, see Emotionally Unstable Personality Disorder: Therapy.

Concomitant illnesses (e.g. addictions, depression, etc.) are taken into account in the treatment.