Histrionic Personality Disorder

Histrionic Personality Disorder

Histrionic Personality Disorder

Histrionic Personality Disorder (HPD) is a Cluster B Personality Disorder characterized by a pervasive pattern of excessive emotional expression and attention-seeking behaviors in multiple situations and settings.

Prevalence

The onset of HPD is in early adulthood and the male to female ratio is 1:4. HPD affects approximately 2 to 3% of the general population; however, rates can be as high as 15% in mental health settings.

Symptoms of Histrionic Personality Disorder:

Associated traits of HPD include:

  • Constant seeking of approval and reassurance
  • Self-indulgence
  • Continuous yearning for appreciation and persistent manipulative behavior to achieve one’s own needs

Diagnosing Histrionic Personality Disorder:

At least five of the following symptoms must be present for a diagnosis of HPD to be made:

  • 1. – Is uncomfortable in situations in which he or she is not the center of attention
  • 2. – Interaction with others is often characterized by inappropriate sexually seductive or provocative behavior
  • 3. – Displays rapidly shifting and shallow expression of emotions
  • 4. – Consistently uses physical appearance to draw attention to self
  • 5. – Has a style of speech that is excessively impressionistic and lacking in detail
  • 6. – Shows self-dramatization, theatricality, and exaggerated expression of emotion
  • 7. – Is suggestible – easily influenced by others or circumstances
  • 8. – Considers relationships to be more intimate than they actually are

People with HPD are often high-functioning, both socially and occupationally. They usually possess good communication skills, although they tend to use them to manipulate others to make themselves the centre of attention.

Risk factors for Histrionic Personality Disorder:

People with HPD crave excitement, novelty, and stimulation, and this can often lead them to risky situations.

Causes of Histrionic Personality Disorder:

The exact cause of HPD remains unknown; however, brain chemistry, genetic traits, unconscious mental processes, and environmental factors have all been implicated in the development of this condition.

In relation to environmental factors, it has been suggested that parenting styles that lead to confusion about what types of behavior are acceptable — such as unpredictable punishment given to a child by his or her parent(s) — contribute to the development of HPD in adulthood.

HPD often coexists with other conditions such as major depressive disorder, anxiety disorders, panic disorder, somatoform disorders, anorexia nervosa, and substance use disorder.

Treatment for Histrionic Personality Disorder:

  • Psychotherapy – such as talk therapy can be used for the treatment of HPD. The goal of treatment is to help the individual uncover the unconscious motivations and fears associated with his or her thoughts and behaviors, and to help them learn to relate to others in a more positive and healthy way.
  • Medications – such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors like Prozac are ineffective at reducing the symptoms of HPD, but they can be used to treat coexisting conditions such as major depressive disorder or generalized anxiety disorder.

Symptoms of Histrionic Personality Disorder:

Associated traits of HPD include:

  • Constant seeking of approval and reassurance
  • Self-indulgence
  • Continuous yearning for appreciation and persistent manipulative behavior to achieve one’s own needs

Diagnosing Histrionic Personality Disorder:

At least five of the following symptoms must be present for a diagnosis of HPD to be made:

  • 1. – Is uncomfortable in situations in which he or she is not the center of attention
  • 2. – Interaction with others is often characterized by inappropriate sexually seductive or provocative behavior
  • 3. – Displays rapidly shifting and shallow expression of emotions
  • 4. – Consistently uses physical appearance to draw attention to self
  • 5. – Has a style of speech that is excessively impressionistic and lacking in detail
  • 6. – Shows self-dramatization, theatricality, and exaggerated expression of emotion
  • 7. – Is suggestible – easily influenced by others or circumstances
  • 8. – Considers relationships to be more intimate than they actually are

People with HPD are often high-functioning, both socially and occupationally. They usually possess good communication skills, although they tend to use them to manipulate others to make themselves the centre of attention.

Risk factors for Histrionic Personality Disorder:

People with HPD crave excitement, novelty, and stimulation, and this can often lead them to risky situations.

Causes of Histrionic Personality Disorder:

The exact cause of HPD remains unknown; however, brain chemistry, genetic traits, unconscious mental processes, and environmental factors have all been implicated in the development of this condition.

In relation to environmental factors, it has been suggested that parenting styles that lead to confusion about what types of behavior are acceptable — such as unpredictable punishment given to a child by his or her parent(s) — contribute to the development of HPD in adulthood.

HPD often coexists with other conditions such as major depressive disorder, anxiety disorders, panic disorder, somatoform disorders, anorexia nervosa, and substance use disorder.

Treatment for Histrionic Personality Disorder:

  • Psychotherapy – such as talk therapy can be used for the treatment of HPD. The goal of treatment is to help the individual uncover the unconscious motivations and fears associated with his or her thoughts and behaviors, and to help them learn to relate to others in a more positive and healthy way.
  • Medications – such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors like Prozac are ineffective at reducing the symptoms of HPD, but they can be used to treat coexisting conditions such as major depressive disorder or generalized anxiety disorder.