Reviewed by Aaron Horn, LMFT
Narcissistic personality disorder or NPD is a personality disorder characterized by an exaggerated and inflated sense of self-importance, the need for praise or admiration from others, the inability to take constructive criticism, and grandiose thinking. They may exploit other people to gain the success they crave. But, you might wonder, what are the traits of NPD as a disorder? Can the NPI or narcissistic personality inventory help you to recognize the symptoms of NPD? How do you gauge narcissism or narcissistic traits? When does it become a diagnosable disorder? In this article, we will answer these questions by covering the difference between vulnerable narcissism and stereotypical narcissism, talking about the narcissistic personality inventory test, and going over someone with NPD traits.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder Symptoms And Traits
Here are potential signs of narcissistic personality disorder, or the potential traits of a person with NPD:
- A grandiose sense of self-importance
- The exploitation of others without remorse or guilt
- A need for praise and admiration from other people
- A sense of entitlement
- A preoccupation with success, beauty, fame, or power
- A tendency to exaggerate one's achievements
- Extreme sensitivity to criticism and constructive feedback
- Envying others when they succeed
Someone with narcissistic personality disorder typically manipulates other people, and they don't feel guilty about it. They may or may not realize their behavior. Since a person with NPD will generally lack empathy, even if they realize their behavior, they may not care about how it's impacting others. Part of the difficulty of treating NPD is that many people with NPD don't want to change, though treatment is possible if they do.
What Is The Narcissistic Personality Inventory?
The narcissistic personality inventory test or NPI test is a test that was created to measure narcissism as a personality trait. Like the narcissistic personality disorder test on the Mind Diagnostics website, it isn't a tool used to diagnose a narcissistic personality disorder. The narcissistic personality inventory test was developed in 1979 and used strictly as an educational tool. If you take the test here, your answers will be recorded anonymously and used for research.
What Is Vulnerable Narcissism?
When we think about narcissism, we typically picture the traits of a grandiose narcissist. You might picture someone who vies for your praise and admiration when you think about narcissism. Perhaps, you picture an extroverted, charismatic, and grandiose person who believes that they're superior compared to other people. In some cases, you'd be absolutely right. However, this isn't the only way that narcissism can present. Vulnerable narcissism is different; it's an internal and introspective type of narcissism.
Someone who is what's described as a "vulnerable narcissist" is highly self-absorbed, but it displays differently. Vulnerable narcissist experiences deep, intense feelings of shame. They alternate between these pervasive feelings of shame and pride. A vulnerable narcissist is extremely sensitive to rejection and anything that could be considered criticism—even a small and helpful critique. Vulnerable narcissists tend to blame others. They can't take responsibility for what they do wrong.
Another one of the notable differences between a grandiose narcissist and a vulnerable narcissist is that a vulnerable narcissist is more likely to tend toward introversion, but at the end of the day, the way to differentiate the two is that a vulnerable narcissist is internally narcissistic; they're self-centered, likely neurotic, and experience deep feelings of shame and self-consciousness. As a result, they crave praise and success. On the other hand, a grandiose narcissist is outwardly narcissistic and better fits the stereotype of someone with a narcissistic personality disorder.
Both a vulnerable narcissist and a grandiose narcissist have narcissistic personality disorder if they meet the disorder's diagnostic criteria. Sometimes, varying presentations of narcissistic personality disorder such as vulnerable narcissism makes it more difficult to diagnose the disorder, as symptoms are less overt. It's hard to find a vulnerable narcissism test because the symptoms are less obvious and can be hidden easily. Additionally, certain traits of NPD can overlap with other disorders.
Narcissistic Personality Disorder In The DSM
The diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, or DSM, is a manual used by professionals to diagnose mental health conditions. The diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders classes personality disorders using clusters. There are three clusters of personality disorders in the DSM. These clusters include Cluster A (Odd and Eccentric), Cluster B (Dramatic and Erratic), and Cluster C (Fearful and Anxious). Narcissistic personality disorder or NPD is a Cluster B personality disorder. Cluster B personality disorders include borderline personality disorder, histrionic personality disorder, antisocial personality disorder, and narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). This specific cluster of personality disorders is characterized by unpredictable, dramatic, or impulsive behavior. While these disorders share a few traits, they are not at all the same, hence why it's so important to see a mental health professional for a diagnosis. For the diagnosis of narcissistic personality disorder to occur, a person must experience a specific set of symptoms, and the disorder must impact one's functioning. Disorders like NPD can impact people's functioning in various ways, including their functioning in relationships, friendships, and in their career. The most recent version of the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders is the DSM-5, which is where you can find the current full criteria for the disorder.
Facts And Statistics On Narcissistic Personality Disorder
Here are some facts and statistics on narcissistic personality disorder or NPD that you may not know:
- It said that about one out of every 200 people has a narcissistic personality disorder.
- People with narcissistic personality disorder are more likely to develop other mental health disorders, such a substance use disorder, compared to the general population.
- NPD can be difficult to diagnose, and it is not as common as other mental health conditions, such as anxiety.
What a Narcissism Test Can And Can't Tell you
Some tests are designed with narcissistic personality disorder in mind, where others are built around traits related to stereotypes about narcissism that are independent of the disorder. This means that some tests can give you insight into narcissistic personality disorder symptoms, while others won't at all. An online narcissistic personality disorder test can't provide someone with a diagnosis for a mental health disorder like a narcissistic personality disorder.
When you're looking into narcissism or are searching for a narcissism test, one of the most essential things to remember is that experiencing one or two traits of narcissistic personality disorder isn't enough for you to be diagnosed with the condition. You must meet the full diagnostic criteria for narcissistic personality disorder listed in the DSM to receive a diagnosis.
If you're searching for a test that can tell you if someone else is a narcissist, reading NPD traits in this article may be beneficial. If a relationship is unhealthy, and it's impacting your life negatively, you have every right to distance yourself or leave, whether or not a person has a diagnosis of NPD.
Is There A Treatment For Narcissistic Personality Disorder?
As stated above, treatment for a narcissistic personality disorder is possible, but someone with a narcissistic personality disorder must have a genuine desire for treatment for it to work. Forms of therapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy or CBT, tend to be the first line of treatment for the condition. For all information regarding specific treatments and therapies, please consult a medical or mental health professional. Many people also seek therapy after undergoing narcissistic abuse. You can find a therapist or counselor who you can talk to about anything that's on your mind, whether it's related to narcissism or another concern. You might decide to find a therapist or counselor using an online directory or searching the web for "therapists near me" or "counselors near me" using a search engine. Another option is to ask your doctor for a referral to a mental health professional or contact your insurance company to see what they cover. Some insurance companies have websites that list the providers that they cover in your area and the conditions or concerns they treat. If you need help searching for a provider, you can use the provider search tool on the mind diagnostics website located in the upper hand right corner of the page. You may decide to seek therapy using an online therapy website, or you might decide to talk to someone in your local area. No matter what you're going through, know that you don't need to go through it alone.
Take The Mind Diagnostics Narcissistic Personality Disorder Test
Do you wonder if you might have traits of narcissistic personality disorder? If so, consider taking the Mind Diagnostics narcissistic personality disorder test. The Mind Diagnostics narcissistic personality disorder test is free, fast, and confidential. Taking the Mind Diagnostics narcissistic personality disorder test is not a replacement for an evaluation or diagnosis from a medical or mental health professional.
Click here to take the Mind Diagnostics narcissistic personality disorder test.