Some people may consider themselves antisocial, but those with antisocial personality disorder have a real mental illness. There are times that you may just want your alone time. That is normal and much needed. Some people are considered antisocial because they are shy and do not involve themselves in social scenes all the time. Antisocial personality is much more that not wanting to be a part of social settings. It is characterized by a dysfunctional way of thinking and perceiving situations as it relates to other people. They have no regard for right or wrong. Most tend to violate the rights of those around them. Antisocial personality disorder is only diagnosed in adults. The causes may vary, but treatment is very difficult.
Antisocial Personality Disorder is a chronic problem that can be very destructive. A person with this disorder is seen as mean or very nonchalant. They have no concern or care for those around them. They treat people in a cold way and attempt to both antagonize and manipulate others. The law means nothing to this person. They get into a lot of trouble and usually have no feelings of remorse. For those with this disorder, prison or substance abuse is the typical outcome.
There are many symptoms of antisocial personality disorder. Those with more severe symptoms are termed sociopaths or psychopathic. Sociopaths have a disorder in their conscience, but psychopaths have a disorder in their conscience as it relates to others. Many people do not immediately seek help because they do not know they have a problem. Even those around a person with antisocial personality disorder may not recognize there is mental illness. Many are not aware of the symptoms and, therefore, contribute this behaviour to just being rebellious or being very cold-hearted. Nearly 3% of men and 1% of men have antisocial personality disorder. Although it is not common, the results of the disorder can be dangerous.
Symptoms of Antisocial Personality Disorder
The symptoms of antisocial personality disorder are extensive. Those with this disorder are impulsive and reckless. They do things based only on their desires. This leads them to violate others. They may injure other people or harm them emotionally. A lack of stability is another symptom. In their mind, there is no law. They violate all the laws and do whatever they want. Many of those committing mass murders are considered to be sociopaths or psychopaths which are all related to antisocial personality disorder. Some signs in children are referred to as conduct disorders. Children may show some early signs of the disorder through animal cruelty and bullying. Children are also still growing and developing. Some just go through a stage and eventually grow out of it.
Causes of Antisocial Personality Disorder
Environment and genetics play a role in the disorder. These are risk factors. Parents with antisocial personality have been seen to have a higher risk of children with the disorder as well. Some things are a result of the environment in which you live. Growing up with antisocial role models can also cause you to develop the same behavior. Children typically model what they see. If they have a close relationship with a person who has no regard for others and act ruthlessly, they too may act in the same manner. The environment is also a reflection of how you are raised. Living in a home where basic needs are not met or parents have no empathy, a child may begin to separate themselves and become antisocial. Antisocial personality disorder is seen at a high rate in prisons. Unfortunately, it is after being convicted of a crime that the disorder is most often diagnosed.
Diagnosing Antisocial Personality Disorder
Adults are the only ones diagnosed with this disorder. Those under the age of 18 are not considered to have antisocial personality disorder. Children typically show conduct problems which after the age of 18 may be diagnosed as an antisocial personality. Treatment for this disease is very difficult. As stated earlier, those with this disorder revert to alcohol and drug abuse, which makes things complicated. Alcohol and drugs have the ability to alter mental stability. When there are other factors involved, you have to treat each one individually. There is no specific treatment for the disorder. Treatment is handled by either a psychologist or a psychiatrist.
Antisocial personality is more than just a social avoidance. It is a serious disorder. It affects the individual, their family, and when a crime is involved, the society. When you are not aware of the signs of the disorder, you may disregard the symptoms and refer to them as just a personality. When personality traits become destruction or harmful, help is necessary. It is not normal to ignore the rights of others. It is not normal to bring harm and have no remorse. These types of behaviours should be red flags. Like most mental disorders there is no cure, but treatment is available. If these signs are evident in someone you know, help them get treatment before it’s too late.
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