Antisocial personality disorder is a mental health condition marked by difficulty relating to others and abnormalities in thought processes and perceptions. A person with this condition may have difficulty getting along well with others and may not seem to care whether his actions are right or wrong. He may break the law frequently, lie, and fail to act responsibly when it comes to tasks at work or at home. In many cases, a person with this condition also abuses alcohol and drugs. Treatment for the condition often includes psychotherapy, medication, and anger or stress management classes.
Also called sociopath personality disorder, antisocial personality disorder causes a person to behave and think in a manner that most people consider abnormal. A person with this condition may lie or break the law and show no remorse for doing so. Often, a person with this condition is manipulative and uses his charm to get what he wants from others. His wishes may be all that matters to him, and he may have a habit of violating the rights of those around him.
A person who has antisocial personality disorder may break the law repeatedly. He may exhibit violent and intimidating behavior and have trouble with controlling his impulses. An individual with this mental condition may also be abusive to his spouse or partner and to children. Additionally, an individual with this disorder may neglect those in his care.
The behavior of a person with this disorder may often seem erratic. He may seem agitated or anxious a good deal of the time and behave irresponsibly at work. He may also have poor relationships both on a personal and business level.
The causes of this mental health condition seem to be both genetic and environmental. Scientist believe that the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions typical of the disorder may be passed on by parents who exhibit the same patterns. Many scientists also believe, however, that the condition is partially caused by situations a person experiences in the course of life, such as child or sexual abuse.
There is no specific treatment for antisocial personality disorder. Often, however, a combination approach is taken to treatment. For example, a person may undergo psychotherapy and receive treatment with medication. Anger and stress management classes and help from social workers may prove beneficial as well. If a patient has a severe case in which he is a serious danger to himself or others, treatment may include hospitalization.