Schizotypal personality disorder (STPD) is a personality disorder characterized by odd or eccentric behaviors. People with STPD may:

  • Have unusual beliefs or mannerisms
  • Display abnormal speech or ways of dressing
  • Exhibit inappropriate emotional responses

Although they are separate conditions, schizotypal personality disorder is considered a variant of schizophrenia. People with STPD have several cognitive impairments, including issues with memory, attention and processing environmental contexts, though they may be unaware of any problem. These cognitive and behavioral symptoms can make it difficult to function in different aspects of daily life and society.

Prevalence of Schizotypal Personality Disorder

Based on a survey of adults in the United States, it’s estimated that between 1–3.9% of the population will experience STPD in their lifetime. Prevalence of STPD is higher among people with lower socioeconomic status, people who are divorced or widowed and men.

STPD and Co-Occurring Conditions

There are both genetic and experience-based factors that contribute to the development of STPD. For example, many people with personality disorders have experienced past traumas, and therefore, personality disorders may co-occur with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). STPD can also frequently co-occur with other personality disorders, such as paranoid personality disorder. STDP also shares some symptoms, such as social deficits, with autism spectrum disorders. Though similar in name, people with STPD rarely go on to develop schizophrenia.

STPD may also co-occur with substance use; research has shown that STPD is associated with greater cannabis use, and has also been linked with alcohol, nicotine and illicit substances.

Schizotypal Personality Disorder and Employment

Due to the difficulties that people with STPD experience in their day-to-day lives and relationships, they may find it difficult to find or keep employment. Research has shown that having STPD was related to lower rates of employment, as well as a history of working at less cognitively complex jobs than those without STPD. People working with STPD may prefer or have experience in jobs that require less social contact.

Statistics on Schizotypal Personality Treatment and Prognosis

Treatments for personality disorders often include a mixture of psychosocial therapy — such as skill-building or problem-solving — and medication to address both the genetic and environmental aspects of personality disorders. It may be important to tailor treatment to an individual, due to the frequent co-occurrence of other mental health conditions

Although personality has been thought to be quite stable over time, there is evidence to support improvements in functioning and relationships among people with STPD. STPD treatment may include:

  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Medication
  • Behavioral strategies, such as skill-building or social skill development

Based on a person’s personal history and any comorbidities, the prognosis for each case of STPD can look slightly different and treatment strategies are best tailored to each individual. If you or someone you care about is abusing substances as a way to cope with STPD, contact The Recovery Village today to discuss our comprehensive treatment options.