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Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) Mental Health

Its core, Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) is largely defined by instability that extends to moods, behaviour, relationships and your sense of self. And while it’s common for us all to experience changes in the way we feel at some point, for those with BPD, it occurs with far greater intensity. This kind of emotional turbulence makes for challenging and oftentimes chaotic relationships for both the individual and those close to them.

Due to these mood changes, BPD can sometimes be confused with bipolar disorder. However, it differs in that these changes occur much more frequently, usually taking place during a single day and sometimes over an hour compared to the weeks at a time cycle of mania and depression with bipolar.

If you’re suffering from borderline-type mood swings, you may jump from sad to angry, afraid and elated all within a short space of time.

One of the main causes of this is the fear of abandonment. There is often an intense and imagined feeling that those close to the individual are about to leave them. For example, being late for a meeting with a borderline can cause that person to resort to verbal abuse because of a perceived lack of attention. This mindset and lack of perspective can also lead to impulsive behaviours, which often surface as a result of these ‘emotional slights.’

The symptoms of BPD are closely intertwined with one another, with each one often informing the appearance of the next, functioning almost like a domino effect.


MINDFULNESS

Borderline personality Disorder folks are often impulsive and have difficulty controlling their impulses and emotions. They need to be more mindful in their approach so they are taught some mindfulness exercises. They are encouraged to observe the events and experiences without judging them. They are also taught to let go of the good and the bad, the fair and the unfair, the just and the unjust, and wise and the foolish. Mindfulness requires full attention so it is very crucial to use the five senses of seeing, hearing, smelling, touching, and tasting to be mindful of one’s surroundings and experiential world. Focusing on the breath helps train the mind to become more mindful and it facilitates taking control of emotions and thoughts. It helps the clients avoid judging situations and most of all self themselves. By practising mindfulness, they learn to respond rather than react. Sometimes mindfulness decreases the intensity of certain emotions like anger, sadness, and envy. Clients are asked, for example, to put a raisin in their mouth and experience the taste before swallowing it. They are encouraged to chew it slowly, enjoy each bite of the raisin and become fully aware of its taste by using the sense of taste, sight, and touch. They are told that their minds are like Teflon-coated pans and they are asked to discard extraneous thoughts from the mind and focus only on the experience. In this way, they learn to stay in the present moment without worries about the past and future. It is like meditation which causes a calming effect and reduces the intensity of irritation, anxiety, depression, anger, and hostility.


Emotional Regulation and Distress Tolerance Clients are also taught to handle emotional distress by regulating their emotions and their interpersonal skills are also honed by giving them exercises and handling situations effectively. They are encouraged to use the wise mind rather than listen to the emotional mind. They are also taught Cognitive Behavioural skills like reframing their dysfunctional thought patterns with logical and reasonable counterstatements. DBT is encouraged to utilize skills learned in the sessions

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a proven approach to psychotherapy designed to help people to develop effective coping strategies that will help them to deal with a wide range of psychological issues.

CBT focuses on a problem-solving approach to help people learn how to react in a different, more positive way to situations that can lead to problem behaviours. By learning new strategies, you can also learn how to change your behaviour and reactions, and how to think about things more positively, thereby improving your life across a range of aspects.




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