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Borderline Personality Disorder Statistics

According to the American Psychiatric Association, Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is not a rare disorder, affecting approximately two percent of the population of the United States. In mental health clinics, however, the statistics for rate of occurrence are much higher, where about 10 percent of outpatients have Borderline Personality Disorder, and about 20 percent of inpatients in hospitals and institutions also have it.

Although the American Psychiatric Association estimates that two percent of the American adult population are affected by Borderline Personality Disorder, other estimates run as high as 10-14% of the general population; however, these statistics are unconfirmed.

Borderline Personality Disorder is very common among adolescents and young adults, with the highest rates occurring between the ages of 18 and 35. Very often people with Borderline Personality Disorder will have additional personality disorders as well. The reason for hospitalization or treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder will usually be a different psychiatric problem like eating disorders, suicide attempts, addiction problems, depression or anxiety disorders.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), Borderline Personality Disorder affects mostly young women. In fact, women are diagnosed with the disorder about two to four times more often than men. They are more likely to have Borderline Personality Disorder than men because of hormonal or genetic issues or because of sexual abuse in childhood, which occurs ten times more often in women than in men.

Men who are diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder who have similar problems as women, or who have interactive styles, are more often classified as having Antisocial Personality Disorder or Narcissistic Personality Disorder rather than Borderline Personality Disorder.

Although the actual cause of Borderline Personality Disorder is not known, both environmental and genetic factors are believed to play a role in predisposing patients to its traits and symptoms. Studies have shown that many people with the disorder report a past history of abuse or neglect as young children. According to statistics reported by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), 40-71% of patients with Borderline Personality Disorder report having been sexually abused in their past, usually by a non-caregiver.

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) reports that Borderline Personality Disorder results in a high rate of self injury without suicidal intent, although they do not report a statistical percentage associated with this fact. They also report a significant rate of suicide attempts and completed suicide with severe cases of Borderline Personality Disorder.

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth Edition (DSM-IV), published by the American Psychiatric Association, lists the incidence of Borderline Personality Disorder in the general population as two percent. This is fifty percent more common than Alzheimer's Disease, and almost more common than Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia combined.

About the Author

David Oliver is the founder of a one stop source of information on how to cope and deal with borderline personality disorder.

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This Week's Borderline Personality Disorder News

The Cutting Truth of Borderline Personality Disorder
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Cutting and other forms of self-mutilation may be hard for many people to understand. People who self-harm are more likely to have an underlying emotional problems, such as Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). According to a study by German researchers, people with BPD may engage in self-injury because they get a sense of emotional relief from physical pain. BPD is a complex set of... Read More

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