Treatment for Borderline Personality Disorder

Hospitalisation can be part of the treatment plan for people who suffer from borderline personality disorder, because they so often visit hospital emergency rooms and are sometimes seen on inpatient units because of severe symptoms.

Inpatient treatment often takes the form of medication in conjunction with psychotherapy sessions in groups or individually. This is an appropriate treatment option if the person is experiencing extreme difficulties in living and daily functioning.

It is, however, relatively rare to be hospitalised for this disorder. Long-term care of the person suffering from borderline personality disorder within a hospital setting is nearly never appropriate.

In Patient Care

Results of inpatient hospitalisation are mixed; while it is an excellent way of helping stabilize the client, it is usually too short a time to attain significant changes within the individual’s personality makeup. A hospital ward has many opportunities to form activating attachments with caring staff and vulnerable patients. This frequently leads to symptoms becoming worse through the interpersonal stimulation of being in an intense environment with a large number of close people. The person struggling is attracted to the idea of a caring environment, while professionals are aware of the high likelihood of causing more damage in the longer-term. This often causes an intense conflict of perspectives that needs careful management. 

Good inpatient care facilities for this disorder should be a highly structured environment which seeks to expand the individual’s independence. Partial hospitalisation or a day treatment program is often all that’s needed as it allows the individual to gain support and structure from a safe environment for a short time, or during the day, and returning home in the evening. In times of increased stress or difficulty coping with specific situations, this type of treatment is more appropriate and more healthy for most people than full inpatient hospitalization.

Our Borderline Personality Disorder Portal

The following pages are designed to provide additional information and advice on BPD treatment and our approach: