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Psychopathy vs. paranoia

“You are a psychopath”, “You have Paranoid thoughts”. Well, there are a lot of everyday situation, where people use this two words. But are we really sure that we know, the real meaning of this two phrases? The only sure thing is that they are among us! I mean, sure- psychopaths and paranoids are sick in the head, but let’s have a look at the differences between them.

Talking about psychopathy means a severe personality disorder, characterized by a pattern of lies, exploitation, carelessness, arrogance, frequent partner exchange, low self-control and the absence of compassion and the lack of remorse. The difficult thing about it is that those affected can appear normal. This strengthens their ability to successfully exploit others. Furthermore, most psychopaths have a false belief in their own superiority, a sense of authority to do what they want and show total disregard for social norms. That is why they leave a large number of victims and survivors throughout their lives. These victims can be strangers, friends, loved ones, employees and family members.

They are unable to love, to feel remorse, or even to show the trace of guilt. Manipulation and deceive are very common for the affected. Because psychopathic people are impulsive and do things that hurt others, they are also called “antisocial” by mental health professionals. Also, there are people who won’t control their feelings, and all in one there are people who are stigmatized and people think that their behaviour is abnormal. Psychopathy is very costly for society because they have a serious lack of empathy, better emotional identification, to other people. They also have devastating impulses, violent tendencies and have no repudiation for their actions and no limits. The think is that psychopaths aren’t necessarily murderers or criminals, but they could be successful businessmen who would be emotionally disabled.

This Disorder, which can affect both men and women, is responsible for much human suffering. The disturbed persons can cause harm to themselves, their family and almost everyone with whom they get in contact. Experts estimate that about 1% of the population is affected that 0.5% are women and 2% are men. The absence of empathy, social responsibility and conscience, considered them to be fearless, impulsive, and manipulative.

Robert Hare “People with a psychopathological inclination have not only less fear, but are usually very self-assured, are glad to be the center of attention and have less fear that other people would reject them.”

The genes are probably not the only determining factor that causes the psychopathy. Moreover, socialization and other environmental factors interact with heredity.

In contrast, Paranoia or Paranoid Disorder is defined as a personality disorder characterized by chronic feelings of mistrust, suspicion, lack of trust towards others as well as hypersensitivity and overestimation for himself. People with this chronic disorder believe that they are being persecuted, that others want to hurt or exploit them, devise hidden threatening meanings and think that the motives of others are suspicious and malicious.

People with paranoid thoughts consider everything as suspicious, suspect that everyone wants their bad, they doubt for the credibility of their family and friends. They also become bad behaviour and hold persistent malice and they finally are unable to trust the others. The causes remain unknown. Biopsychological factors contribute to the onset of the disorder.

Individuals with this disorder assume that other people will exploit, harm, or deceive them, even if no evidence exists to support this expectation. While it is fairly normal for everyone to have some degree of paranoia about certain situations, people with paranoid personality disorder take this to an extreme.

They may have different characteristics of these two personality disorders, but they also have a very important commonality with each other. The existence of the disorder affects the whole life of the individual, especially their relationships, resulting in significant problems in three dimensions of life: work, love, and fun.

The handling of the two disorders

Patients with paranoid disorder rarely seek treatment because of their suspicion, even towards therapists. The psychopaths, moreover, avoid visiting specialists, because they don’t think that they have psychical problems, and often their neighbourhood also don’t recognize the amount of the problem.

It is very significant for the positive or negative development of psychopathy and paranoid people contributes the environment which should be supportive and interventional in order to help the sick member. Early diagnosis and medication along with psychotherapy are a very powerful combination of psychopathic treatment with good results. A psychopath can be functional in society without risk elements but will never be emotionally safe and reliable.

Chronic supportive psychotherapy with a specialist for both psychopaths and paranoid would be probably the best approach.

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Psychopathy vs. paranoia


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