The 10 Worst Mental Disorders

We review ten mental disorders or psychopathologies that are experienced with great anguish.

The mental disorders are diagnosed relatively frequently in our day. Everyone has heard of a mental health related pathology.

In reality, these mental disorders (or mental illnesses ) have their origin in neurological and psychological disorders that in turn cause abnormal behaviors in the affected people.

Mental illness: from common to strange

Most disorders are related to a specific area of ​​the brain or nervous system, although the causes of each of them may differ and may even be unknown by the scientific community.

Mental illness affects a large number of people. In statistical terms, it is said that a third of the population will suffer some type of mental disorder during their life.

Below I will reveal a list that contains some of the most severe mental disorders.

10. Antisocial Personality Disorder

The person who suffers from this disorder is characterized by his tendency not to relate in society, avoiding any interaction.

The different symptoms and behaviors that characterize TASP include: theft, aggressiveness, a tendency to loneliness, violence, lies… In addition, people affected by TASP tend to be shy, depressed and have social anxiety. This last point is due to their fear of being rejected. All in all, psychological therapy is very effective in managing the inconveniences of antisocial disorder.

  • More on Antisocial Personality Disorder: “Psychopathy: what happens in the psychopath’s mind”?

9. Stockholm syndrome

Stockholm Syndrome is a relatively common mental disorder in people who have been victims of kidnapping. They show some kind of positive feeling towards their captors.

International police records show that around 27% of kidnapping victims have this disorder.

The Stockholm Syndrome also applies in cases such as child abuse, rape or mistreatment. It is not a distressing disorder, but it draws a lot of attention because it is difficult to understand.

  • More on Stockholm Syndrome: “Stockholm Syndrome, friend of my abductor”

8. Lima syndrome

The Lima Syndrome is, precisely, a disorder opposite to the Stockholm Syndrome. In this case, the kidnappers show sympathy for their hostage.

This disorder was coined after an incident that occurred in the Peruvian capital in 1996. The MRTA kidnapped hundreds of politicians, diplomats, and military personnel from the Japanese embassy in Lima. Hours later, the kidnappers were empathizing with the hostages, and gradually released them.

7. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is an anxious disorder characterized by recurring thoughts that produce fear, restlessness, worry, compulsive behaviors, etc.

Some of the symptoms of OCD are compulsive checking, excessive washing or cleaning, religious thoughts, nervous rituals such as opening the doors a certain number of times before entering the room, or irrational aversions to certain numbers. Fortunately, psychotherapy and learning some habits allow a great quality of life for those affected.

  • More on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: “Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: What is it and how does it manifest?”

6. Dyslexia

Dyslexia is a learning disorder. The dyslexic person cannot read correctly due to the discrepancy between the learning potential and their level of performance, without any type of problem, be it sensory, physical, motor or educational deficiency. This causes certain maladjustments in reading which in turn can cause other types of learning and self-image psychopathologies.

As a consequence, people affected by Dyslexia have serious reading comprehension problems. Fortunately, in our time, intervention and treatment offer many guarantees to deal with this disorder and, in adulthood, a vast majority of dyslexics have no problem writing correctly.

5. Selective mutism

Selective mutism is a psychiatric disorder that causes the person to be unable to speak in a certain social or with certain people. Selective mutism is usually associated with shyness and social anxiety.

It is relatively common in children. When they start their schooling, some do not say a word, despite speaking fluently at home. Only the continuity in time of this behavior can alarm us in a case of SD. In most cases, the symptoms gradually disappear.

4. Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is a mental disorder caused by an abnormality in cognitive processes and a poor emotional response. The affected person suffers from alterations in the perception or expression of reality. Recently, there have been important scientific advances on schizophrenia.

This disorder is commonly known as one in which the affected person hears many voices in his head, and these voices are perceived as external to his body. These symptoms may or may not occur. The general symptoms of the picture, however, tend to be disorganized language and thinking, delusions, hallucinations (within which we could refer to the famous ‘voices’), affective disorders and inappropriate behavior.

Although it has been a widely studied disorder, it is still considered a complex disorder with a large amalgam of symptoms. Psychiatric and psychological treatment has proven highly effective in controlling this disorder.

  • More on Schizophrenia: “An investigation discovers that Schizophrenia is the manifestation of eight genetic mutations”

3. Dissociative Identity Disorder

Dissociative Identity Disorder, or Multiple Personality Disorder, is an identity disorder. The person affected by this disorder develops more than one personality and shows different behaviors and behaviors in different situations. In the article ” Multiple Personality Disorder ” you have much more information on the characteristics of what is considered one of the most severe mental disorders.

It is often said that people with DID change their behaviors radically and later do not remember that episode.

It is one of the disorders whose affected people live with greater restlessness, as well as one of the most controversial among the scientific community due to the difficulty of psychometric devices to diagnose it and due to the lack of effective treatment. However, in recent years there have been important steps in improving treatments.

  • More information on Dissociative Identity Disorder: “Multiple Personality Disorder”

2. Self-harm / suicide

The person with this mental disorder tries to kill himself (or tries to get attention for these behaviors). These behaviors include cutting hands or arms, burning, etc.

In this type of mental disorder, the person tries to self-harm or even to kill himself. Usually, this behavior can be motivated not by the achievement of death, but by some kind of attention they receive when they show this behavior, which refers to a background disorder that is usually serious.

1. Cotard syndrome

In this rare psychiatric disorder, the affected person believes that they have died, or that they have lost blood or an internal organ. This delusion can be dangerous since the disturbed person can act unpredictably. These types of behaviors are frequently associated with nihilistic and hypochondriacal personalities.

Cotard Syndrome is named after Jules Cotard, who was the first doctor to diagnose this strange condition. He described the different phases of the disorder in a thesis written in Paris in 1880.

People affected by Cotard Syndrome refuse social contact and neglect their personal well-being. Its cause is commonly neurological or mental pathologies, and it is associated with derealization and depression.

  • If you want to know more about Cotard’s Syndrome, we recommend reading: ” Cotard’s Syndrome: living people who believe they are dead “

Bibliographic references:

  • Barlow, DH (2003). Psychopathology. Ed. Thomson
  • Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders DSM-IV. (nineteen ninety five). Ed. Masson and DSM-IV-TR (2002)
  • Vallejo, J (Ed.). (2006). Introduction to Psychopathology and Psychiatry. Barcelona: Masson.

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