Dr Sacrifice Chirisa Mental Health Matters
The hallmarks of narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) are grandiosity, a lack of empathy for other people, and a need for admiration.
People with this condition are frequently described as arrogant, self-centred, manipulative and demanding.
They may also concentrate on grandiose fantasies like their own success, beauty, brilliance and may be convinced that they deserve special treatment.
People with narcissistic personality disorder believe they are superior or special, and often try to associate with other people they believe are unique or gifted in some way. This association enhances their self-esteem, which is typically quite fragile underneath the surface.
Individuals with narcissistic personality disorder have difficulty tolerating criticism or defeat, and may be left feeling humiliated or empty when they experience an “injury” in the form of criticism or rejection.
Narcissistic personality disorder is diagnosed by five or more of the following symptoms:
Exaggerates own importance
Is preoccupied with fantasies of success, power, beauty, intelligence or ideal romance
Believes he or she is special and can only be understood by other special people or institutions
Requires constant attention and admiration from others
Has unreasonable expectations of favourable treatment
Takes advantage of others to reach his or her own goals
Disregards the feelings of others, lacks empathy
Is often envious of others or believes other people are envious of him or her
Shows arrogant behaviours and attitudes.
Fifty to 75 percent of the people diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder are male.
Additionally, it is common for many adolescents to display the characteristics listed above; this does not indicate that they will later develop narcissistic personality disorder.
The causes of narcissistic personality disorder are not yet well understood. Genetic and biological factors as well as environment and early life experiences are all thought to play a role in the development of this condition.
Treatment for narcissistic personality disorder can be challenging because people with this condition present with it a great deal of grandiosity and defensiveness, which makes it difficult for them to acknowledge problems and vulnerabilities.
Individual and group psychotherapy may be useful in helping people with narcissistic personality disorder relate to others in a healthier and more compassionate way. Intensive psychotherapy is the key for treatment.