Borderline Personality Disorder

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a complex mental health condition that causes emotional instability, relationship problems, a low sense of self-worth, and fear of abandonment. Other common symptoms include problems managing anger and recurring self-harming or suicidal behaviors.

The negative or destructive behaviors of borderline personality disorder are intense. These behaviors occur over a long period of time. They often occur in combination with other disorders such as depression, anxiety, or other mental health problems. People with this disorder often have problems with substance abuse, gambling, or eating disorders.

There is no cure for borderline personality disorder. But symptoms are often treated with counseling and medicines such as antidepressants or mood stabilizers. Most people who are treated for borderline personality disorder do get better over time. But treatment can be difficult, and recovery can take years.

Last Revised: March 8, 2013

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Lisa S. Weinstock, MD - Psychiatry

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