Paranoid personality disorder is a psychiatric condition characterized by paranoia and a general mistrust of others. It often manifests as isolation from others and a tendency to observe other's behavior solely to confirm their own suspicions. It often appears alongside other psychiatric disorders. It is part of the schizophrenia spectrum disorders and tends to run in families.
Under World Health Organization guidelines, a person can be diagnosed with the condition if they exhibit three of the following symptoms:
- Excessive sensitivity to setbacks
- Tendency to persistently bear grudges
- A tendency to construe neutral or even postive responses of others with suspicion
- A tenacious sense of personal rights out of proportion to the situation at hand
- Consistent suspicion of infidelity from intimate partners
- Excessive self-importance
- Preoccupation with conspiratorial explanations for personal or world events
Treatment of patients with the condition is difficult due to their underlying suspicion. In most cases a mix of pharmaceutical therapy and psychotherapy is used to control the condition. However, improvement is generally only seen in patients who acknowledge their condition and seek help for it.