Best Treatment For Borderline Personality Disorder

There is no complete cure for borderline personality disorder. But with the proper treatment approach, you can achieve a comfortable level of recovery and remission.

Proper treatment for bipolar disorder is necessary as the patients are at a higher risk of suicide and self-harm.

Treatment for BPD mainly consists of psychotherapy, but medications may be added. Hospitalization is appropriate for the sake of safety. Therapy helps the patient learn skills to manage and cope with the condition. With treatment, the patient can feel better about himself and live a more stable, rewarding life.

Treatments for Borderline Personality Disorder

Fortunately, there are many treatments for BPD and co-occurring mental health conditions, such as:

  • Psychotherapies
  • Medication
  • Self-help remedies
  • Support groups
  • Alternative therapies like yoga and aromatherapy

Currently, BPD treatments mainly involve a combination of psychotherapy and medication.

Some patients exhibit extreme symptoms of personality disorder. In such situations, BPD patients may require a short hospital stay.

Furthermore, you can find self-help tools and support groups to help you overcome this mental disorder.

Now let us look at some of the proven treatment options for managing borderline personality disorder.


Borderline personality disorder is a mental disorder. The most effective treatment for BPD is psychotherapy, or “talk therapy.”

Evidence from research shows that psychotherapy works well for calming down most signs and symptoms of BPD. It helps BPD patients in several ways, such as:

  • Give necessary awareness to this mental disorder.
  • Assist the patient in managing emotional outbursts.
  • It enables the patient to focus on his current ability to function.
  • Reduces impulsive behavior through self-awareness and control.
  • It helps to improve the BPD patient’s relationship with others.

A psychiatrist or psychologist will adapt suitable therapies according to the patient’s specific conditions. Here are the types of psychotherapy treatments that work well for BPD:

Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)

DBT is the most effective psychotherapy for treating people with a borderline personality disorder. It is about teaching and developing the skills necessary for managing emotional outbursts, relationships, impulsive behavior, and stress.

DBT is a proven psychotherapy method for treating suicidal ideation and mood disorders. It benefits behavioral disorders such as substance abuse and self-harm. This treatment is a particularly helpful type of therapy for self-destructive BPD.

Mentalization-based therapy (MBT)

According to Anthony Bateman, head of psychotherapy at St. Ann’s Hospital, London, “Patients with BPD show reduced capacities to mentalize.” This leads to problems with emotional regulation and difficulties managing impulsivity, especially in interpersonal interactions.

Mentalizing is how an individual makes sense of other people and external reality. It involves implicit and explicit thinking regarding subjective states and mental processes.

The purpose of MBT is to help the patient identify his thoughts and feelings at any given time. It enables the individual to see an alternative perspective on the current situation.

Mentalization-based therapy develops the ability to think before acting and reduces impulsive behavior.

Schema-focused therapy (SFT)

Schema-focused therapy for borderline personality disorder (BPD) is effective psychotherapy. It helps identify and change unhealthy ways of thinking.

A disgruntled person carries in his mind hurtful feelings in many areas of his life. SFT can detect unfulfilled needs that have led an individual to negative life patterns and behaviors.

Schema-focused therapy tries to quench unsatisfied needs healthily and removes hurt feelings and negativity.

Schema-focused therapy can be done individually or in a group.

Transference-focused psychotherapy (TFP)

TFP, also known as psychodynamic psychotherapy, helps help the patient understand his emotional imbalances and interpersonal relationship issues.

The therapist establishes a friendly and healthy relationship with the patient to correct the relationship problems. The therapist makes the patient aware of his shortcomings in relationships. The patient then learns to correct his behavior in actual situations.

Systems training for emotional predictability and problem-solving (STEPPS)

STEPPS is a 20-week treatment that enables the patient to work in a psycho-educational group. The group members may be friends, family, caregivers, or coworkers. It reduces unstable relationships and emotional pain.

The psycho-educational group treatment consists of skills training with cognitive-behavioral techniques. The STEPPS treatment system also trains family members, friends, coworkers, and significant others on managing a healthy relationship with BPD patients.

Related article: What Causes BPD?

Are Medications for BPD Helpful?

A few decades ago, mental health experts did not recommend using medications to cure BPD.

Currently, treatments for mental disorders include medications for anxiety and depression. These medicines do have significant effects on managing specific symptoms of the disorder.

It should be noted that the FDA approves no medicines for treating BPD.

Also, medications may work well for some psychological conditions that usually occur along with borderline personality disorder.

Some medications are part of the psychotherapy procedures used to deal with specific symptoms of any mental disorder.

Primarily, psychotherapy treatments are vital to the reduction of BPD symptoms. Antidepressant medication helps to calm some of the symptoms of BPD. A mentally relaxed person responds better to psychotherapy treatments.

Some of the most commonly prescribed medications for BPD may include:


Anti-anxiety medications help calm down severe anxiety-related issues for a few BPD patients. However, such anti-anxiety drugs contain potentially addictive elements.


Many people with BPD are prone to becoming uncontrollably angry, impulsive, and full of paranoia. In such situations, antipsychotics may help the patient to regain mental composure and calmness.


An individual with BPD undergoes cycles of emotional ups and downs with sudden swings in mood. Antidepressant pills might help the patient recover from sadness and depression to some extent.

Anticonvulsants or Mood Stabilizers

Mood stabilizer medications such as lithium, asenapine, or carbamazepine may help the BPD patient overcome impulsive behavior.

Omega-3 fatty acid

In recent human studies, researchers have repeatedly discovered associations between omega-3 fatty acid levels and symptoms of psychosis, self-harm, depression, and impulsivity. Some leading psychiatrists say omega-3 fatty acids can be used therapeutically in borderline personality disorder.


Patients with severe symptoms of BPD may need to be treated in a psychiatric hospital or clinic. Admitting the patient to a hospital also helps to prevent his self-harming or suicide attempts.

The inpatient hospitalization of a BPD patient is safe during a severe mental health crisis and helps stabilize the patient.

In most cases, the patient only has to stay in the hospital briefly.

BPD Self-Help

Individuals with borderline personality disorder suffer sudden emotional outbursts and frequent mood swings. For this reason, self-help strategies for BPD are necessary for a quick recovery.

Self-help strategies for BPD include understanding the disorder thoroughly and developing skills to manage it. Also, the patient should learn to control emotional outbursts and impulsive behavior.

All self-help strategies for BPD should be planned and practiced under the supervision of a therapist.

Every BPD patient and person living with them should know about mental health emergency services nearby.

In the United States of America, you can get help by dialing 911 or going to the nearest emergency room.

If the patient shows recurring incidences of self-harming acts or suicidal attempts, seek a psychiatrist’s help immediately.

Persons living with the patient should anticipate a crisis and take steps to prevent untoward incidents.

BPD Recovery Time

Borderline personality disorder is a complicated mental disorder that takes a long time to recover. As the patient grows older, most of the symptoms diminish, but some of them continue to persist for years.

Regular therapy and conscious efforts by the patient can improve their ability to function and live better. Typically, patients improve considerably, but some symptoms may persist.

According to research, recovery from an illness is both clinical and personal.

Clinical recovery is measurable by diagnosing the patient’s existence or nonexistence of BPD symptoms. A mental health professional interviews the person again after a period of treatment to check for the presence of symptoms and the ability to function in everyday life. BPD can be clinically recovered if the symptoms remain diminished or disappear over time.

Personal recovery is a self-verifying process in which the patient identifies positive changes in them. Personal recovery involves changing one’s attitude, skills, goals, values, roles, and feelings. A person recovering from BPD can live a fulfilling and contributing life despite the limitations imposed by their illness.

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