How do people develop multiple personalities, and (how) can professionals tell which personality a patient is showing with a brain scan?


How do people develop multiple personalities, and (how) can professionals tell which personality a patient is showing with a brain scan?

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Dissociative Identity Disorder, aka D.I.D usually develops as a result of extreme long term abuse in childhood. Both sexual and physical. From my understanding, the personalities develop as a way to either comfort themselves or to protect themselves or both.

As far as brain scans goes, they can distinguish between a healthy brain and one with D.I.D. Im not 100% sure on this but if they can tell which personality is showing at that time it’s most likely because the personality is more aggressive or maybe really happy. And they see the part of the brain that controls those emotions lighting up.

This is a controversial topic. Some psychologists and psychiatrists don’t believe that Dissociative Identity Disorder (formally known as multiple personality disorder) even exists.

I work in the mental health field, but am not a trained psychologist or doctor of any kind, but in my opinion it does exist.

It is reasonably rare, but is thought to develop as a protective mechanism, in some people who experience very extreme types of abuse or trauma during the early part of their life.

Not everyone who experiences these things develop DID, as I said it’s rare, but for those who do, it is believed that the mind splits into various identities to deal with certain aspects of the trauma which is outside of the awareness of the actual person to protect their personality from being damaged.

Some professionals have dedicated their career to studying this disorder and have developed techniques to determine which personality they are dealing with through treatment.

Any treatments that involve hypnotherapy, must be reviewed with caution, as evidence suggests these therapies may in fact make disorders such as DID worse.

I am not sure if a brain scan can determine different personalities. As far as I understand it, training and experience in dealing with the disorder is the best way to know “who” you are dealing with.

The way I’ve heard it explained. No idea how accurate.

People have multiple personalities and we use them depending on the situation. This is our brain adapting to social situations. Personality disorder is when someone is fixed to certain personalities and/or cannot adapt to the right situation.

No brain scan can show which personality someone is exhibiting. Scans shown in movies have little to no basis in reality.

Using the word “professionals” to refer to the people and their work in that field is dangerous because it tends to conflate the well developed skills and techniques in other fields such as construction (aka engineering) wherein the professionals can use the techniques of their real science to actually make something specific happen that contributes to others.