Do introverts tend to experience more psychological problems?

Do introverts tend to experience more psychological problems?

We are searching data for your request:

Forums and discussions:
Manuals and reference books:
Data from registers:
Wait the end of the search in all databases.
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.

Are there any evidence suggesting that the more introvert people could be more subject to psychological problems?

Is possible to hypothesize that one of the causes is the lack of ideas in comparison with other people from the community?

Several other disorders relate to introversion, including:

  • Avoidant personality disorder (Morey et al., 2002)
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (Samuels et al., 2000)
  • Schizotypal personality disorder (Funder, 1997? Don't have it on-hand, but will try to verify this later when I do.)
  • Schizoid personality disorder (Morey et al., 2002)
  • Generalized anxiety disorder in young adults (ages 25-39; Kessler et al., 2008)

I would not expect lack of ideas to mediate these relationships. Introversion is sometimes thought to relate to "richer inner worlds" (can't recall where I read that, and I don't put a lot of stock in the claim). Introversion relates negatively to openness to experience, but seems to have a complex relationship with creativity. A common theory about introversion is that it relates to interest in reading (found some such evidence in Chinese adolescents so far; Lau & Cheung, 1988); this would certainly help with any lack of ideas.

- Funder, D. C. (1997). The personality puzzle. W. W. Norton & Co.
- Kessler, R. C., Gruber, M., Hettema, J. M., Hwang, I., Sampson, N., & Yonkers, K. A. (2008). Comorbid major depression and generalized anxiety disorders in the National Comorbidity Survey follow-up. Psychological Medicine, 38(3), 365-374.
- Lau, S., & Cheung, S. M. (1988). Reading interests of Chinese adolescents: Effects of personal and social factors. International Journal of Psychology, 23(1-6), 695-705.
- Morey, L. C., Gunderson, J. G., Quigley, B. D., Shea, M. T., Skodol, A. E., McGlashan, T. H.,… & Zanarini, M. C. (2002). The representation of borderline, avoidant, obsessive-compulsive, and schizotypal personality disorders by the five-factor model. Journal of Personality Disorders, 16(3), 215-234.
- Samuels, J., Nestadt, G., Bienvenu, O. J., Costa, P. T., Riddle, M. A., Liang, K. Y.,… & Cullen, B. (2000). Personality disorders and normal personality dimensions in obsessive-compulsive disorder. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 177(5), 457-462. Retrieved from

Additional traits

Behind these diverse explanations lies a further consensual principle held by psychologists: personality is multifaceted, and it’s the different combinations of personality traits that ultimately determines our behaviour and wellbeing.

Let’s take the five-factor theory of personality, one of the most popular personality theories, as an example. In addition to the extroversion-introversion spectrum, the theory also accounts for four other traits: openness (being open to new experiences, feelings and ideas) conscientiousness (being organised, self-disciplined and goal-driven) agreeableness (being helpful, cooperative and good-natured) and neuroticism (being emotionally unstable).

These other traits will also have influenced how people have reacted to the pandemic. While extroversion is often associated with healthy activities, it is conscientiousness that predicts health-related behaviours best. Similarly, while extroverts tend to have a larger social network than introverts, it is agreeableness that ultimately predicts the quality of that social network.

In other words, extroversion-introversion on its own is far too simplistic a measure for us to use when thinking about people’s response to the pandemic. When it comes to coping with lockdown, different combinations of personality traits could entail very different behaviours.

More: Mental health

Mum's craving for a cup of dirt a day causes her to lose four teeth

Feeling unappreciated at work 'makes you three times more likely to experience depression'

Why are we so obsessed with being the 'main character'?

Study Finds Sex Differences in Mental Illness

WASHINGTON—When it comes to mental illness, the sexes are different: Women are more likely to be diagnosed with anxiety or depression, while men tend toward substance abuse or antisocial disorders, according to a new study published by the American Psychological Association.

Published online in APA’s Journal of Abnormal Psychology ® , the study looked at the prevalence by gender of different types of common mental illnesses. The researchers also found that women with anxiety disorders are more likely to internalize emotions, which typically results in withdrawal, loneliness and depression. Men, on the other hand, are more likely to externalize emotions, which leads to aggressive, impulsive, coercive and noncompliant behavior, according to the study. The researchers demonstrated that it was differences in these liabilities to internalize and to externalize that accounted for gender differences in prevalence rates of many mental disorders.

Researchers analyzed data collected in 2001 and 2002 by a National Institutes of Health survey of 43,093 U.S. residents 18 and older who were civilians and not institutionalized. Of those, 57 percent were women and 56.9 percent were white 19.3 percent were Hispanic or Latino 19.1 percent were African-American 3.1 percent Asian, native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander and 1.6 percent were American Indian or native Alaskan. The data were representative of the age, race/ethnicity and gender distributions of the U.S. population in the 2000 Census. Participants answered interview questions. The analysis examined their lifetime mental health history as well as over the prior 12 months.

The authors cited previous research that found women suffer more than men from depression, because “women ruminate more frequently than men, focusing repetitively on their negative emotions and problems rather than engaging in more active problem solving.”

The findings support gender-focused prevention and treatment efforts, the study said. “In women, treatment might focus on coping and cognitive skills to help prevent rumination from developing into clinically significant depression or anxiety,” said lead author Nicholas R. Eaton, MA, of the University of Minnesota. “In men, treatment for impulsive behaviors might focus on rewarding planned actions and shaping aggressive tendencies into non-destructive behavior.”

Past research also indicated that women report more neuroticism and more frequent stressful life events than men do before the onset of a disorder, indicating that environmental stressors may also contribute to internalizing, the report said.

Article: “An Invariant Dimensional Liability Model of Gender Differences in Mental Disorder Prevalence: Evidence from a National Sample,” Nicholas R. Eaton, MA, and Robert. F. Krueger, PhD, University of Minnesota Katherine M. Keyes, PhD, and Deborah S. Hasin, PhD, Columbia University Steve Balsis, PhD, Texas A&M University Andrew E. Skodol, MD, Columbia University and University of Arizona Kristian E. Markon, PhD, University of Iowa Bridget F. Grant, PhD, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Journal of Abnormal Psychology, Vol. 121, No. 1.

Nicholas R. Eaton can be contacted by email or at (314) 954-1270

Introverts tend to respond more strongly to loud noises

Although the personality dimension of introversion/extraversion is certainly influenced by biological factors (including being partly inherited from our parents), we now know that the arousal theory itself is only half true. There is ample evidence, including from brain imaging studies, to show that introverts tend to respond more strongly to loud noises and other sensory stimulation. But contrary to Eysenck’s theory, there is precious little evidence that introverts have higher baseline levels of arousal in general.

So while it’s still debatable whether the lemon test can accurately reveal your introversion, it certainly does tell you something interesting about your physical sensitivity – and you could always try repeating it a few times to get a more reliable result.

In any case, extraversion and introversion aren’t the only aspects of personality that can be measured with a lemon-based test. A paper published in 2014 suggested that we can also use a lemon to test a different aspect of personality – how much empathy people have. Again, this is something that psychologists often measure using questionnaires, with the usual issues of subjectivity and honesty coming into play.

Yawning can be contagious - and more empathetic people may catch a yawn more easily (Credit: Getty Images)

To provide a more objective test, Florence Hagenmuller and her colleagues asked volunteers to put three rolls of cotton in their mouths (used to measure saliva) and watch two one-minute videos – one featured a man cutting up and eating a lemon, the other (the control condition) involved the same man taking coloured balls out of a container and putting them on a table.

Afterwards, the researchers weighed the cotton rolls and found that, overall, the participants salivated more when watching the man eat lemon than the control video. This is an example of what psychologists call “autonomic resonance” – the way that we automatically mimic each other’s physiological states, such as when we yawn when we see someone else yawn, or wince at their pain. But we all differ in how sensitive we are in this respect and, intriguingly, the researchers found that the higher the participants had scored on a questionnaire measure of empathy (they agreed with statements like “I often have tender, concerned feelings for people less fortunate than me” and “I am often quite touched by things that I see happen)”, the more they tended to salivate while watching the man eat lemon.

This is a trickier test to try at home, unless you want to start weighing cotton rolls filled with saliva! Also, to get any meaning from the results, you’d have to compare how much you salivated to the lemon video compared with one or more other people. I could imagine it would make for a fun science experiment to try out at school or college.

So what makes an introvert feel lonely?

1. Shallow talk

There is nothing more tiresome, boring, and discouraging for an introvert than the necessity to have shallow chitchat. Having to discuss pointless things or desperately looking for something nice to say can instantly make your social battery run dry.

And here you are, feeling lonely in the midst of a conversation! An extrovert would struggle to understand how something like this could be even possible because they have a natural ease in finding common ground with other people. This makes them enjoy different types of conversations, including chitchat.

2. The feeling of being excluded

I’m sure you’ve been in a situation where everyone but you had something in common, for example, a shared interest or hobby. So you found yourself playing the role of a silent observer in a lively discussion – without having any clue about the topic or opportunity to participate in it.

A situation like this feels as if you are surrounded by people who speak a foreign language you don’t understand. Only that the language is the connection between those people, and you are left out of it.

This uncomfortable feeling of being excluded is among the most frequent reasons for introverts’ loneliness.

Moreover, it seems that the quiet ones are prone to the so-called FOMO – the fear of missing out – just like everyone else. You see, many of us like to be invited to social events even when we have to intention to attend them! Now, this is a really controversial trait of this personality type, isn’t it?

3. Having no people to confide in

As we have said numerous times, introverts appreciate the depth of communication in the first place. This also means that it is particularly important for us to feel free to share our personal experiences and problems with our friends.

When we have no people around us we could confide in, we may end up feeling lonely. For extroverts, it is different – they don’t need to discuss personal topics with someone to consider them a friend. Having common interests and shared experiences is enough for them.

4. Being surrounded by people who don’t share your views on life

Another source of loneliness for introverts is when those around us have a different set of values and perspectives on life.

We may seem quiet and uninterested in talking at large social gatherings, but we love speaking our mind when we are in the company of our friends or family members. When they don’t share our values and views, this can be difficult.

After all, most introverts tend to avoid conflict, so the last thing we want is to start a heated argument. Being surrounded by people with totally different perceptions can make you feel alone and misunderstood.

Best jobs for extreme introverts

Since we spend so much of our days at work, it’s important that you find a job where you can embrace your introverted personality.


Engineering is a well-paying and high-demand job. You’ll probably work with a mix of extroverts and introverts. But many engineering jobs focus on using independent problem-solving skills to solve certain technical problems. In many cases, you will work alone and occasionally touch base with other team members.

IT Specialist

If you enjoy computers, IT specialists are always in demand. You don’t need to talk to many people, but you do need to be skilled in troubleshooting and thinking independently. Many IT specialists can work remotely.


Working as a librarian allows you to embrace a quiet space while engaging in some social interaction with others. In this job, you will catalogue books and movies, oversee different library services, and assist with helping patrons find what they need.


If you’re interested in law, working as a paralegal can be a perfect job for an introvert. You will help your attorney with research, organizing files, and preparing legal briefs. Even if you work alongside a team, you’ll spend a good part of your day managing these tasks alone.


Every individual and business must keep track of their finances, and accountants assist with taxes and money management. For the most part, you will work alone and consult with clients periodically. Many accountants either work in a firm or remotely.

Social media manager

Although it has the word “social” in the title, this job can be a great option for introverts. Most of the time, you’ll be doing tasks like SEO, PPC campaigns, and creating unique content. This job also tends to be remote, with most communication done online.

Artist/Writer/Creative Professions

If you enjoy creating art, you may want to pursue a creative career. In these jobs, you often work entirely alone. This allows you lots of uninterrupted time to imagine, brainstorm, and create. You may talk to people related to marketing or making sales, but many of these interactions can occur online.

Types of accentuations or psycho-types

In psychology psychotypic concepts of personality are widely used, which to some extent testify to the presence of borderline deviations. Each person has an accentuation that is developed in one way or another and at any time can develop into a serious problem.

There are the following types of accentuations in humans:

  • Cycloid type (biphasic or cyclical mood swings from bad to good, unstable interests)
  • Labile type of personality (quick and uncontrollable mood changes, which in psychology call rapid switching, the change of emotions cannot be predicted even by the person himself)
  • Asthenic type (closed and serious person with a characteristic asthenic appearance, differs stubbornness and poor adaptation to volatile conditions)
  • Sensitive option (high demands on yourself and others, impressionability and increased susceptibility)
  • Psychasthenic type of personality (characterized by an increased emotional rejection of responsibility, in psychology they are noted as reliable and judicious people)
  • The schizoid variant (in the first place is non-standard thinking, however, its sequence is practically absent)
  • Conformal type (completely adjusted to the environment and hate change)
  • Unstable option (rejection of labour activity with a craving for idle existence without control)
  • Hysteroid (requires increased attention to itself, because of what is inclined to demonstrative behaviour)
  • Epileptoid type (restrained personality with outbursts of anger, in everything likes clarity and certainty)
  • Hyperthymic (stable positive mood, openness and high energy).

The psychology of the personality of each person is a complex branched structure. Even high-skilled specialists will not be able to determine all of its branches. Insufficient understanding of the device of brain work causes the continuous emergence of new theories and classifications that positively prove themselves in practice before the first non-typable case.

Watch the video: The 4 Types of Introvert - Which one are you? (May 2022).


  1. Daran

    Interesting post, thanks. Also secondary for me personally is the question “will there be a continuation? :)

  2. Tejind

    God mean! So and so!

  3. Arlyss

    Very interesting!!! Only I can not quite understand how often your blog is updated?

  4. Tochtli

    This thought has to be purposely

  5. Rami

    Thank you for the information.

  6. Colwyn

    I join. I agree with all of the above. We can communicate on this theme.

Write a message