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What is Antisocial Personality Disorder?

antisocial personality disorder, mental disorder

Antisocial personality disorder is one of the many different mental disorders which may be diagnosed in adults, but what is this actually and what does it mean for those who have this form of mental illness? There are a number of common feature and traits that define those who have this mental disorder. According to mental health professionals those who have antisocial personality disorder do not always exhibit violent or dangerous behavior, but many serial killers and those responsible for reprehensible crimes against people and animals usually have this mental disorder. Since these individuals have little or no empathy for others then they do not feel the same restraint that individuals without this disorder have against hurting or causing pain to others.

According to the DSM-5 definition of antisocial personality disorder the common traits for this mental disorder include:

  • Breaking the law or failing to follow rules
  • Deception, frequent lies, and intentionally misleading others
  • Impulsive, a failure to plan ahead or to consider the consequences
  • Aggression, fighting, cruelty to people or animals, or bullying
  • Little or no regard for the safety or feelings of others
  • Irresponsible
  • Difficulty meeting financial obligations
  • A lack of remorse or guilt
  • Little or no empathy for what others experience
  • Outbursts of violence

The symptoms of antisocial personality disorder listed above generally appear by the time an individual is 15 years old, however many child mental health specialists avoid this specific mental disorder diagnosis until adulthood to avoid any attached stigma. Anyone who displays three or more of these symptoms should be evaluated by a mental health professional.