Mental Health

Psychopathy: Is Someone You Know a Psychopath?


If you have ever had to question the debatable character of a person you know, probably due to certain irrational behaviors then it’s time you got some clarity on whether or not the person might be a psychopath.

psychopathy is a personality disorder associated with anti-social behavior, a person who is a psychopath exhibits traits of inability to show empathy and has an egotistical personality, it is also associated with sociopaths.

There are several signs of psychopathy that one should be aware of such as an individual exhibiting some form of superficial charm and glibness, inflated sense of self-worth, the constant need for stimulation, exhibiting a lying character and has lack of remorse or guilt.

A psychotic disorder is also called psychosis and what are the signs of psychosis? They include delusions, hallucinations, talking incoherently and being highly agitated. Sadly, a person who has this disorder may not be aware that he or she has this behavior.

Other signs to be aware of are hostility and hyperactivity. The real meaning of psychopath is a person suffering from a chronic mental disorder with abnormal or violent social behavior and exhibiting no feelings for others.

Therefore, it is imperative for one experiencing all these symptoms to carry out psychopath testing, so early diagnosis is the key to tackling this phenomenon.

Causes of Psychopathy

There is no known cause for this mental disorder however; there are contributing factors such as:

  • Genetics
  • Environmental factors
  • Up-bringing (poor parenting)
  • Dark experiences
  • Trauma
  • Physical abuse


Signs of Psychopathy

What are other signs one should look out for when trying to diagnose psychopathy? One can exhibit a form of self-centered behavior and start to manipulate others.

Another important sign is that one would show a feeling of lack of guilt or remorse for anything, they will appear to have shallow feelings and have trouble empathizing with the sorrows and pains of others, all these are some of the symptoms of psychopathy. Here is a comprehensive checklist of signs and symptoms:

  • Role models are usually physical or fictional characters with shady characters
  • Superficial politeness and charm
  • Over-bloated ego
  • Pathological liars
  • Emotionless
  • Manipulative
  • Poor self-control
  • Unrealistic thoughts and goals
  • Delinquency
  • Highly irresponsible
  • Impulsive and careless
  • Never accountable
  • Lack of remorse or empathy


When all these signs and symptoms have been noticed then one should see a qualified doctor or a health professional for help and these qualified doctors would do a psychopathy assessment which is in two parts an interview session and a review of the person’s file and records.

The question of the lips of many is can a psychopath be cured? Well, the answer is no, however, the syndrome can be managed. The reason why a person with psychopathy cannot be cured is that it is a personality disorder and not a disease, it has been researched that 1% – 2% of men and 0.3% – 0.7% of women in the entire population of the world are estimated to be a true psychopath.

So, what can we say distinguishes a psychopath from the rest of the population? It is mostly the lack of empathy and remorse to things with the accompanying feeling of assurance that they are absolutely normal. Also, people with this trait exhibit some form of narcissism, Machiavelli’s, and they are good at pretending to the world that they are something that they are not.

Sometimes, a person who is a psychopath can be able to deceive whoever they want and manipulate their way out of situations, for instance, a psychopath can trick their therapist if they were forced to have a therapy, they can actually put up a false character, pretending to be someone else apart from their real self.

Is there a cure for psychopathy?

There is actually no known pill, drugs or vaccine that can change a psychopath and no amount of talk therapy can be able to change a person who feels no empathy. Researches are still going on to accelerate the treatment and subsequent cure for psychopathy; this is because scientists discovered that psychopaths have a reduced grey matter in their brain and that they have a different brain than the rest of us.

Psychopathy is characterized by symptoms that go a long way to affect the mood and behavior of the person and diminish interpersonal relationships. In order words, to be diagnosed with an anti-social personality disorder, one must have attained the age of 18 years and must have demonstrated symptoms by the age of 15.

It is said that the word psychopath is used to describe people with violent crimes without remorse but we know that findings determine that people with psychopathy are not necessarily violent. It is proper to distinguish between a person who is a psychopath and a sociopath, even if both of them exhibit some lack of empathy, even at times, people tend to mix them up. There are, however, some distinguishing factors between them, while people who are sociopaths have a clear conscience, psychopaths completely lack conscience.

Also, those are sociopaths who may seem reckless and ill-tempered, on the other hand, psychopaths are seen as charming, intelligent and likable by others. Research has also shown that when it comes to gender and psychopathy, males are more likely to be diagnosed with this disorder than females. People with these psychopathic characteristics do not experience the attribute of fear so one who is a psychopath is usually bold and has some form of aggressive behavior.


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