Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) - Symptoms and Diagnosis
What are the symptoms of BPD and how is it diagnosed?
If your GP thinks that you may have borderline personality disorder (BPD), they will arrange for you to see a psychiatrist. They may send your details to your local community mental health team (CMHT). This is called a ‘referral’.
Your psychiatrist will decide if you have an illness based on the following guidelines.
The guidelines tell your psychiatrist what to look for. They will diagnose you with BPD if you have at least five of the symptoms below.
- Extreme reactions to feeling abandoned
- Unstable relationships with others
- Confused feelings about who you are
- Being impulsive in ways that could be damaging. For example, spending, sex, substance abuse, reckless driving, and binge eating
- Regular suicidal behaviour, threats, or self-harming
- Long lasting feelings of emptiness
- Difficulty controlling your anger. For example, losing your temper or getting into fights
- Intense, highly changeable moods
- Paranoid thoughts when you’re stressed
Your psychiatrist will ask you about how you feel and about your life history. They may talk to other people close to you. They can diagnose you after one assessment if they have enough information to do this.
Psychiatrists will not usually diagnose BPD in someone who is under 16.
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