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What is a Jekyll and Hyde personality disorder?

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Quick Answer

A Jekyll and Hyde personality disorder is a dissociative identity disorder, formerly called a split personality disorder or multiple personality disorder. Disassociation is also present in most borderline personality disorder patients.

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Full Answer

Dissociation is a type of attribute that is present in most personality disorder patients as well as patients with other mental illnesses. It is considered a thinking disruption or disturbance as well as a change in awareness, identity, memory or consciousness. It is not the same as simply forgetting something and it is not associated with memory problems or substance abuse.

Some patients feel as though they are unable to control their emotions, actions or other bodily functions. They can be frightened by what is happening and unable to remember the dissociation after it has passed. Although it is unknown exactly how and why dissociation occurs, researchers have found that there is a connection between the dissociation process and a person's experiencing of a traumatic event.

"Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" is a story that is a cultural icon and shows a character with dissociative disorder. The character showcases the traits of dissociation with inconsistent moods and strikingly different behaviors. Dr. Henry Jekyll is a calm and socially acceptable man who then morphs into his other personality and identity, Edward Hyde. The story was originally written in book form, but has since been adapted for both the stage and film. It was written by Robert Louis Stevenson in 1886.

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