People who have dependent personality disorder always feel like they need someone else to take care of them. They worry all the time about being left alone and feel anxious and very tense when they are alone.
The cause of this disorder is not known. Experts think it may be caused by differences in the brain or nervous system. It might also be related to problems in the family such as abuse, financial stresses, death of loved ones, or mental illness. The disorder usually appears in early adulthood. More women than men have this disorder.
Symptoms of dependent personality disorder include:
Your healthcare provider or therapist will ask about your symptoms and examine you. He or she may also:
Psychotherapy can help you see yourself more clearly. It helps you recognize the effects of your behavior on others. This can help you change behaviors that get in the way of living a satisfying life.
Cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) is a way to help you identify and change views you have of yourself, the world, and the future that are not realistic. This therapy helps you recognize unhealthy ways of thinking. You learn new thought and behavior patterns that lead to healthier living. Assertiveness training is also very effective in treating this disorder.
If your symptoms are seriously interfering with your daily life, seek help from your healthcare provider or a mental health professional.
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