Decrease (-) Restore Default Increase (+)
Bookmark and Share

Health Library

Back to MainBack to Main   Print This Page Print    Email to a Friend Email
 

Schizoid personality disorder

Definition

Schizoid personality disorder is a mental health condition in which a person has a lifelong pattern of indifference to others and social isolation.

Alternative Names

Personality disorder - schizoid

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Cause of schizoid personality disorder is unknown. This disorder may be related to schizophrenia and shares many of the same risk factors.

Schizoid personality disorder is generally not as disabling as schizophrenia. It does not cause the disconnection from reality (in the form of hallucinations or delusions) that occurs in untreated (or treatment-resistant) schizophrenia.

Symptoms

A person with schizoid personality disorder often:

  • Appears aloof and detached
  • Avoids social activities that involve emotional intimacy with other people
  • Does not want or enjoy close relationships, even with family members

Signs and tests

Schizoid personality disorder is diagnosed based on a psychological evaluation that assesses the history and severity of the symptoms.

Treatment

People with this disorder rarely seek treatment, thus little is known about which treatments work. Talk therapy may not be effective because persons with schizoid personality disorder may have great difficulty forming an effective working relationship with a therapist.

One approach that appears to help is to put fewer demands for emotional closeness or intimacy on the person with this condition.

People with schizoid personality disorder often do well in relationships that do not focus on emotional closeness. They tend to be better at handling relationships that focus on work or intellectual activities and expectations.

Expectations (prognosis)

Schizoid personality disorder is a long-term (chronic) illness that usually does not improve much over time. Social isolation often prevents the person from seeking the help or support that might improve the condition.

Limiting expectations of emotional intimacy may help people with this condition make and keep connections with other people.

References

Blais MA, Smallwood P, Groves JE, Rivas-Vazquez RA. Personality and personality disorders. In: Stern TA, Rosenbaum JF, Fava M, Biederman J, Rauch SL, eds. Massachusetts General Hospital Comprehensive Clinical Psyhchiatry. 1st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Mosby; 2008:chap 39.


Review Date: 11/10/2012
Reviewed By: David B. Merrill, MD, Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, Stephanie Slon, and Nissi Wang.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
adam.com
 

Medical Care

Cancer
Pregnancy & Prenatal Classes
Weight Loss
Orthopedics
Heart Disease
Neurology
Women's Health
More Medical Care

Locations

Hospitals
Immediate Care
Health Centers
Emergency Room
Doctors Offices
Specialists
Affiliate Hospitals

Patients and Visitors

MyChart
Pay Your Bill
Request an Appointment
Get Healthy
Support Groups
Fitness Groups
Mobile Applications
Clinical Trials
Online Nursery
Classes and Events
Send an eCard
Patient Stories
Places to Stay
Say Thanks

About Us

Quality Report 
Careers
Ways to Help
Community Outreach
Contact Us
(502) 629-1234

Connect with us

© 2014 Norton Healthcare
Serving Kentucky and Southern Indiana