How do psychiatrists typically diagnose personality disorders? Is there a diagnostic tool or is it just based on a conversation with the client?
Hi, thank you for submitting this question.
Psychiatrists use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM–5) to diagnose mental health challenges including personality disorders. This document contains different sets of criteria per condition which psychiatrists use to support their diagnosis. A psychiatric assessment is the name for an appointment with a psychiatrist during which they will ask you about your experience managing mental health both in the past and currently.
You do not need to prepare for a psychiatric assessment however, you may find it interesting to read about different mental health disorders .
Your GP will be able to refer you for a psychiatric assessment. Mentioning some of the research you've done about different mental health disorders may help them to write the referral.