WHAT IS IT?
Defined by the American
Psychiatric Association as a personality disorder characterized by a pattern of
excessive attention-seeking emotions, usually beginning in early adulthood,
including inappropriately seductive behavior and an excessive need for
approval. Histrionic people are lively, dramatic, vivacious, enthusiastic, and
flirtatious. HPD is diagnosed four times as frequently in women as men. It
affects 2% to 3% of the general population and 10% to 15% in inpatient and outpatient
mental health institutions.
HPD lies in the dramatic cluster of personality disorders. People with HPD have a high need for attention, make loud
and inappropriate appearances, exaggerate their behaviors and emotions, and crave stimulation. They may exhibit
sexually provocative behavior, express strong emotions with an impressionistic style, and can be easily influenced by
others. Associated features include egocentrism, self-indulgence, continuous longing for appreciation, and persistent
manipulative behavior to achieve their own needs.