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Borderline Personality Disorder Causes

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Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a mental disorder denoted by a pattern of unstable moods, volatile and impulsive behaviour, issues in interpersonal relationships that is developed mostly in early adulthood and causes immense distress in an individual’s life.

BPD is not caused due to a single factor but is likely to be developed due to a combination of factors. They include:-

  • Genetic predisposition

The vulnerability of developing BPD increases if you have a history of the mental illness running in your family. Almost 60% of the times the cause of BPD is due to genes. Many twin studies carried out show examples of how genetic influences play a huge role in determining the development of the personality disorder. A strong linkage is seen in chromosome 9. However be cautious of the fact that there is no evidence of particular gene for the development of BPD.

  • Issues with brain chemicals

Individual who suffer from BPD have malfunctions in their brain chemicals specifically serotonin. Brain chemicals are essential in controlling functions in the brain. Alterations in the levels of serotonin have links to regulation in mood, aggression, depression and issues with controlling destructive urges.

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  • Abnormalities in brain structure and functioning

Studies using the MRI scans have helped to understand abnormalities in the brain associated in the development of BPD. The scans reveal that most individuals with BPD, showed three parts of the brain that had unusual levels of activity or were either smaller than they were supposed to be. These parts of the brain were:

  • The amygdala – The part of the brain associated in regulating emotions, specifically the more “negative” emotions, like aggression, fear and anxiety.
  • The hippocampus – The part of the brain associated in regulating behaviour and self-control.
  • The orbitofrontal cortex – The part of the brain associated in decision making and planning.

These areas of the brain contribute to symptoms of BPD. The reasoning behind these structuring is associated to environmental and social factors.

  • Environmental and social factors

Environmental and social factors in childhood play a large role in the development of BPD. Most individual who suffer from BPD have been victimized or exposed to environmental and social factors so grave that contributed to the development of the personality disorder. They include:

  • Being exposed to chronic distress or fears as a child
  • Being victims of sexual, physical or emotional abuse.
  • Being subjected to parental neglect or abandonment
  • Being brought up or growing up with family member/s who suffered from serious mental illness, like bipolar disorder, depression or substance abuse.
  • Unstable family relationships.

A study published in Advances in Psychiatric Treatment indicates that 87% of the individuals diagnosed with BPD, reported childhood trauma.

The relationship a child shares with its parents and family determine a huge part of their perception and interaction with the world around them. Unresolved issues in childhood could later develop into distorted thinking patterns as adults.


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Irrespective of all these factors that may have caused and contributed to the development of  borderline personality disorder, there are successful treatments available in helping you to control and manage your symptoms and resolve the issues from the past. Call us now on +919611194949 for counseling & therapy.

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