Do personality disorders get worse with age?

Personality disorders worsen with age. For some patients, the personality disorder may disappear in midlife only to re-emerge in old age. Several disorders, including paranoid, borderline, schizoid, obsessive-compulsive, narcissistic, and histrionic disorder, tend to worsen with age. Some conditions worsen due to stressors that are more common in old age than in earlier life.

For instance, dependence on care from strangers exacerbates paranoid, avoidant, schizotypal, and schizoid personality disorders. Similarly, the increased loss of attractiveness in old age worsens histrionic, borderline, and narcissistic personality disorders. Meanwhile, relocation such as a move to a nursing home may aggravate obsessive-compulsive, avoidant, and paranoid disorders.

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