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Paranoid Personality Disorder Symptoms

Rohini Mohan Jul 24, 2020
People who suffer from this disorder, distrust society and are asocial. They are extremely suspicious about people, their intentions, and actions, and are quick to believe that they are being threatened. While there is no cure for this disorder, therapy aids in subsiding their paranoia.
Paranoid personality disorder is believed to be either genetically inherited or learned as a result of real life experiences, which may have left traumatic impressions on the individual's personality.
For instance studies show that, children who were brought up in unhappy families, where they were exposed to prolonged periods of mental and physical violence faced higher chances of developing PPD in the future. One foremost reason being that they were victimized for no justification and therefore imbibed a distrustful approach towards society as a whole.
Their society is inclusive of their immediate family members and spouses as well. Apart from learned traits, sometimes this disorder may be transferred through genes, wherein people who have a family history of mental imbalances such as depression and schizophrenia may be more susceptible to this disorder.

What is Paranoid Personality Disorder

This disorder is not age specific and may begin to show its symptoms at any given phase of the individual's life.
  • These individuals do not trust people, and fear that everybody is waiting to deceive and harm them.
  • They feel threatened and ridiculed for no apparent reason.
  • They construe normal statements as insults and take jokes as personal slights.
  • They are secretive, guarded and defensive against others, as they fear that others might use their personal information against them.
  • They are also extremely possessive and jealous by nature, which makes them difficult partners and parents.
  • They lack patience and prefer living in isolation, as they hate interacting with people except a selected few who have managed to gain their trust and faith.
  • These people may be inclined towards sudden outbursts of temper and violence as and when they feel threatened.
  • They are suspicious about the intentions of people and feel like they are being targeted.
  • They will rarely ever, consider the problem from both angles. This means that they will never actually think that they too may have had a role to play in a dispute. They are quick to blame others for mishaps and when things go wrong. However, this trait can be worked around, by speaking to them, after their trust has been gained.
It is difficult for people to understand why a person with PPD is behaving in a particular manner. These individuals develop hostile relationships, that in turn stimulates a negative response from normal people. This creates a loop, wherein such individuals feel all the more assured about the fact that people are trying to harm them as they are disliked.


Contrary to popular belief, people with PPD do not suffer from delusions or hallucinations. They remain alert and are constantly aware of real-time and reality. They may share some of the common personality disorder symptoms, which is why the diagnosis must be made carefully.
There are many mental disorders that may have similar traits as PPD, which is why therapists must tread very carefully before coming out with their own random conclusions. The only way to test whether the person actually has PPD is to analyze their levels of mistrust and suspicion towards people.
Some of the paranoid personality disorder symptoms are, that the patients portray signs of isolation and distrust that are abnormally high, they are always trying to seek out the hidden motive behind people's words and actions, they display aggression, lack of social compatibility and understanding towards humor.
There isn't a cure for PPD, though the only way it can be reduced is through Psychotherapy . This mental disorder often remains for the entire lifetime of the individual. Though it can be controlled and converted into a latent behavioral trait of the sufferer, it would take an excellent therapist in order to begin the process of rehabilitation.
The reason being that people with PPD do not trust anyone, therefore they have no reason to trust therapist. They fear that they would be manipulated and controlled through medications. In order to deal with these individuals, therapists will need to be patient and calm, they cannot show their irritation or try to coerce the patient to follow certain norms.
Any glitch in the interpersonal treatment will lead to patient abandoning the therapy. The therapist cannot afford to judge the sufferer for their behavior, the reason being that PPD patients truly believe that it is other people's faults which make them react in a hostile manner. They don't blame themselves as they don't comprehend it to be their own fault.
The only way therapists can be successful while dealing with these cases is to maintain complete disclosure with their patients. They cannot afford to hide details about which medications are being prescribed to them, the administrative records of their therapy, what is going to happen tomorrow and the next steps in the therapy.
If other specialists are introduced to the case, they must be introduced, and allowed to decide whether they are willing or not to allow the new therapist to be a part of their case. The rather trivial procedures become significant while dealing with people with PPD. Their trust has to be gained, which usually takes a very long time.
Once the trust has been affirmed, Hypnosis may help dwell into the reason for their high levels of distrust. Once the root cause has been found, the therapist can proceed with the healing process of the sufferer.
Though this may apply only in cases where there have been past instances of trauma that the patient had to suffer through. These methods may help alleviate this disorder, though at times medications may be required. Medications do not help cure the disorder, but aid in suppressing the basic traits.