PD Images

The PD gallery features a series of images commissioned for the National PD Programme to inform attitudes, as well as challenge the stigma and discrimination associated with PD.

Promote PD – please use these images and information on PD positively by sharing them with colleagues, friends and family.



The International Classification of Mental and Behavioural Disorders (ICD-10)

(World Health Organisation 1992), defines a personality disorder as:

a severe disturbance in the characterological condition and behavioural tendencies of the individual, usually involving several areas of the personality, and nearly always associated with considerable personal and social disruption

The fourth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) (American Psychiatric Association 1994) defines a personality disorder as:

an enduring pattern of inner experience and behaviour that deviates markedly from the expectations of the individual’s culture, is pervasive and inflexible, has an onset in adolescence or early adulthood, is stable over time, and leads to distress or impairment



Studies indicate a prevalence of >10-13% of the adult populationin the community, and show that personality disorders are more common in younger age groups (25-44 yrs) and equally distributed between males and females

People with personality disorders are more vulnerable to other psychiatric conditions, and in particular, they are more likely to suffer from depression

Estimates of the prevalence of personality disorders in psychiatric hospital populations vary, but range between 36% – 67%

There is a very high prevalence of personality disorder in the prison population – one recent study indicated this was as high as 78%

Quotes from people affected by PD

We have been damaged, often early in life and we have grown up with mistaken beliefs about ourselves. For these reasons we have difficulties with relationships because we often believe that we are unlovable and we are very sensitive to rejection.

We need easier and known access to services

We suffer from post-traumatic personality disorder.

We have a reactive mental illness

I think for years when I was told you have a PD and nothing can be done

I always believed that there was hope – with the right conditions, support and friendships, as well as opportunities for growth and personal development