If you or someone close to you is struggling with a mental health disorder, you might not realize it is a dissociative identity disorder. With dissociative identity disorder, a single individual can manifest two or more completely distinct personalities. At any given time, only one of those personalities is in control, so to speak, and dictating behavior. Dissociative identity disorder can cause significant gaps in memory as one or more personalities to take control. Thankfully, treatment for dissociative disorder involving psychotherapy can help manage the symptoms and work to merge the personalities.
What is Dissociative Identity Disorder?
Dissociative identity disorder or DID is a complex disorder usually associated with a combination of cultural and developmental factors, including childhood trauma. Dissociative identity disorder affects about 1% of the population and manifests with activation in different brain areas, usually associated with amnesia.
What are the Criteria for a Dissociative Disorder Diagnosis?
According to the American Psychological Association and the DSM-5, the criteria for a dissociative disorder diagnosis include:
- An inability to recall important personal information, usually traumatic or stressful information
- Two or more personalities
- Significant gaps in the ability to recall everyday events
- Alternate behavior, consciousness, perception, or memory associated with different personalities at any given time
If you are a family member or close friend of someone with dissociative identity disorder, you might notice that they have entirely alternate behaviors at different times. The different personalities associated with dissociative identity disorder can take on multiple genders, religions, and even cultural identities.
It looks different for everyone, and as this is a mental health condition, different identities can control behavior causing memory loss, delusions, and depression. With therapy, those different behaviors can be managed, and the rate at which different personalities switch and take control can be reduced.
What are the Causes of Dissociative Identity Disorder?
There are a few causes of dissociative identity disorder:
- The most common cause is sexual or physical abuse during childhood.
- Less common causes include experiencing a traumatic event like military combat, extreme violence, or a natural disaster.
In effect, significant trauma results in individuals distancing themselves from that trauma by developing two or more distinct identities. The first or primary identity is the individual’s usual personality. Alternate identities represent alternative personalities that are often very different from one another. Alternate personalities can have different genders, ethnicities, hobbies, or ways of interacting with the world. Some individuals who suffer from dissociative disorder have up to 100 different personalities.
Dissociative disorder treatment works by merging the different personalities back to the core personality and helping individuals uncover the repressed childhood trauma that led to the development of alternate Personalities in the first place.
Dissociative identity disorder treatment can also treat other symptoms of DID such as anxiety, depression, delusions, memory loss, or disorientation.
How to Find Dissociative Disorder Treatment Near New Jersey?
Treatment for dissociative symptoms should focus primarily on resolving childhood trauma while also alleviating common signs and symptoms like delusions or depression.
Treatment for dissociative identity disorder usually involves psychotherapy and, at times, might also involve medications to help with secondary symptoms like depression and anxiety.
With the proper treatment for dissociative symptoms, you can undergo healthcare treatment from a trained professional who can focus on things like:
- Identifying any previous trauma or abuse and helping you work through it
- Managing different behavioral changes with techniques from fields of study like behavioral therapy
- Helping to merge separate identities back together to form a single identity
- Incorporating guided meditation and hypnotherapy or self-reflection as a way to uncover repressed memories
At Water Gap Wellness Center, we offer top-of-the-line dissociative identity disorder treatment from our mental health treatment center near New Jersey. Our Tri-State area rehab facility specializes in dissociative disorder treatment, focusing on individualized programs, self-reflection, and psychotherapy. As part of your dissociative disorder treatment, you can expect a day of evidence-based and holistic treatment, starting with morning meditations or reflections, working with an individual therapist, and attending group counseling sessions.