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Depersonalization Disorder

(Also Known As: Dissociative Disorder, Dissociative, Chronic Depersonalization Disorder)

(Reviewed by: Paul Peterson, Licensed Therapist)

What is Depersonalization Disorder?

The Diagnostics and Statistics Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition, Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR) includes depersonalization disorder as one of the dissociative disorders. These illnesses involve the separation of identity, perception, memory, and consciousness. It is a condition where an individual feels like a stranger to themselves. It involves a persistent or recurring feeling of detachment from one’s body. The Office of Rare Diseases (ORD) classifies depersonalization disorder as a rare disease. This means that it can happen to less than 200,000 people in the United States.

A dissociative disorder is an illness that involves disruption of the memory, consciousness, and self-identity of an individual. In this disorder, the patient feels as though everything that is happening is not real or is part of a dream. However, there is not enough evidence to prove the relation of depersonalization disorder with dissociative illnesses.

Depersonalization disorder takes place as a result of life-threatening risks or excessive stress. Likewise, it may be triggered by attempts to take certain substances, such as marijuana, ecstasy, ketamine, or hallucinogens. Depersonalization is the third most common psychological condition after anxiety and depression.

Two-thirds of the patients suffering from depersonalization disorder come from the female population. The condition begins to manifest itself prior to age 30 in about fifty percent of the cases. 1

Could You Have Depersonalization Disorder?

Depersonalization Disorder Topics

Related Conditions

Anxiety Disorder NOS – Uncontrolled Anxiousness, Irrational Fear, Excessive Worry, Phobia
Borderline Personality Disorder – Dissociation, Mood Instability, Impulsiveness
Dysthymic Disorder – Mood Disorder, Anxiety, Chronic Depression, Insomnia
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – Nightmares, Insomnia, Sexual Abuse, Irritation, Social Impairment, Problems with Memory and Concentration, Intrusive Memories, Hyper-Vigilance