Many mental health professionals believe that both learned and inherited factors play a role in its development. It seems likely that Histrionic Personality Disorder may be over-diagnosed in women and underdiagnosed in men. Most people are more attuned, for example, to the histrionic flamboyance of Blanche DuBois than to the equally over-the-top macho style of Stanley Kowalski, who shows strong histrionic elements as well. Psychoanalytic theories incriminate seductive and authoritarian attitudes by fathers of these patients. Other character traits due to a combination of genetics and environment including adverse childhood experiences. Other environmental factors that might be involved include a lack of criticism or punishment as a child, positive reinforcement that is given only when a child completes certain approved behaviors, and unpredictable attention given to a child by his or her parent(s), all leading to confusion about what types of behavior earn parental approval. A pervasive pattern of excessive emotionality and attention seeking, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts. In many cases, people with histrionic personality disorder have good social skills; however, they tend to use these skills to manipulate others so that they can be the center of attention.
Causes of Histrionic Personality Disorder
Common Causes and Risk factors of Histrionic Personality Disorder
Learned and inherited factors.
Signs and Symptoms of Histrionic Personality Disorder
Sign and Symptoms of Histrionic Personality Disorder
Inappropriately seductive appearance or behavior.
Excessive concern with physical appearance.
A need to be the center of attention (self-centeredness).
Low tolerance for frustration or delayed gratification.
Rapidly shifting emotional states that may appear shallow to others.
Make rash decisions
Be uncomfortable unless he or she is the center of attention
Dress provocatively and/or exhibit inappropriately seductive or flirtatious behavior
Shift emotions rapidly.
Treatment of Histrionic Personality Disorder
Common Treatment of Histrionic Personality Disorder
Treatment is often prompted by depression associated with failed romantic relationships. Group therapy is not recommended for those with HPD.
Psychotherapy (a type of counseling) is generally the treatment of choice for histrionic personality disorder. The goal of treatment is to help the individual uncover the motivations and fears associated with his or her thoughts and behavior and to help the person learn to relate to others in a more positive way.
Medication might be used to treat the distressing symptoms, such as depression and anxiety that might co-occur with this disorder.
Dialectical behavior therapy. This type of cognitive behavior therapy focuses on coping skills – learning how to take better control of behaviors and emotions with techniques such as mindfulness, which helps you observe your feelings without reacting. It is most often used to treat borderline personality disorder. Doctors are studying the effectiveness of this type of therapy with all types of personality disorders.