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When talking about schizoid and schizotypal personality disorders, it is important to distinguish them from the class of disorders that share the same root: schizophrenia spectrum disorders.
The most prevalent symptom of schizotypal personality disorder are the odd or eccentric beliefs and behavior of the individual. Depending on the severity, people with StPD can experience moderate to serious impairment in their day-to-day lives, as these unusual thoughts and consequent behaviors can affect their relationship with the people closest to them.
For people with SPD, they often appear to lack a desire for intimacy, and will avoid close relationships with others. They usually prefer to spend time with themselves rather than socialize or be in a group of people. This behavior does not come from a contempt or anxiety from being around other people; rather, people with SPD are more or less indifferent to social experiences.
Schizotypal personality disorder (StPD) is characterized by acute discomfort or reduced capacity for close relationships, as well as by cognitive or perceptual distortions and eccentricities. In a study by Skodol et. al, “patients with schizotypal and borderline personality disorder have significantly more impairment at work, in social relationships, and at leisure than patients with obsessive-compulsive personality disorder or major depressive disorder; patients with avoidant personality disorder were intermediate.” Some of the reasons for this can be attributed to the nature of the more severe personality disorder. But how do the symptoms of schizotypal personality disorder bring about these effects?
Schizoid and schizotypal personality disorders are characterized by long-standing patterns of detachment from social relationships and difficulty in establishing and maintaining those relationships.
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