Personality Disorders Afflict 20% of Young Adults

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 1, 2008 4:40 PM CST
Almost one in five college-age young adults are afflicted by personality disorders, a new study finds.   (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – In the wake of shootings at Virginia Tech and Northern Illinois University, a new study says nearly 20% of young adults suffer from personality disorders, the AP reports. Obsessive compulsive disorder topped the list, but the problems include anti-social feelings and paranoia, which can lead to violence. Fewer than a quarter of those students receive treatment, the study said.

One analyst said such disorders are overdiagnosed, but others said the study echoed reports of mental health problems among young people. The challenges of life in one's early 20s—striving at school and in work, building relationships, having young families—can trigger the disorders, the study said. Only alcohol and drug abuse are more common problems, afflicting almost a third of the roughly 5,000 people interviewed for the study.