Although their names sound alike and they might have some similar symptoms, schizoid personality disorder is not the same thing as schizophrenia. Many people with schizoid personality disorder are able to function fairly well, although they tend to choose jobs that allow them to work alone, such as night security officers, library, or lab workers.Schizoid personality disorder is one of a group of conditions called "Cluster 'A' " or eccentric personality disorders. People with these disorders often appear odd or peculiar. People with schizoid personality disorder also tend to be distant, detached, and indifferent to social relationships. They generally are loners who prefer solitary activities and rarely express strong emotion.
Schizoid personality disorder is characterized by a pattern of detachment from social relationships and a restricted range of expression of emotions in interpersonal settings, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by four (or more) of the following: Neither desires nor enjoys close relationships, including being part of a family Almost always chooses solitary activities Has little, if any, interest in having sexual experiences with another person Takes pleasure in few, if any, activities Lacks close friends or confidants other than first-degree relatives Appears indifferent to the praise or criticism of others .
People with this personality disorder rarely seek treatment, because their thoughts and behavior generally do not cause them distress. When treatment is sought, psychotherapy -- a form of counseling -- is the form of treatment most often used. Treatment likely will focus on increasing general coping skills, as well as on improving social interaction, communication, and self-esteem. Because trust is an important component of therapy, treatment can be challenging for the therapist, because people with schizoid personality disorder have difficulty forming relationships with others. Medication is generally not used to treat schizoid personality disorder itself. Drugs might, however, be prescribed if the person also suffers from an associated psychological problem, such as depression. Treatment of schizoid personality disorder typically involves long-term psychotherapy with a therapist that has experience in treating this kind of personality disorder. Medications may also be prescribed to help with specific troubling and debilitating symptoms.