One of the most recurrent themes and debates within the world of psychology has been the relationship between psychopathy and sociopathy with criminal behaviors. We define psychopathy as the personality disorder that causes an individual to be unable to empathize with others or to feel some kind of remorse. Generally, psychopaths use the people around them as a mere instrument to achieve their goals.

For its part, sociopathy , unlike psychopaths, is considered a trait acquired by the environment or the education received. According to experts, psychopaths are “born” and sociopaths are “made” , but in any case, the two personality types show an undeniable disregard for society and the rights of others. Impulsiveness, aggressiveness or irresponsibility are some of the common traits that both disorders present.

Who is more dangerous?

Psychopaths generally have a hard time creating real emotional bonds with others, and therefore their relationships are often superficial and designed solely for their own benefit. However, curiously, psychopathic people are often seen by others as polite and trustworthy people. Both psychopaths and sociopaths are dangerous people as they try to live a seemingly normal life while dealing with their mental disorder. However, psychopathy is probably the most dangerous mental illness of all, but still we must bear in mind that not all psychopathic or sociopathic people have to be violent , although it is often a factor that is usually present.

When a psychopath is involved in a crime, he tends to do it in a cerebral way and minimizing any type of risk that he may assume or fall on them. They know how to perfectly plan their actions to make sure they are not caught and, in addition, they are usually decisive people with great capacity and a wide range of solutions for any conflict. For his part, when a sociopath gets involved in a crime, he does it impulsively and unplanned, without taking into account the consequences. They tend to show aggressiveness easily and often exhibit violent behaviors that can lead them to commit some type of crime.

Seek your own benefit

Despite all this, psychopathy and sociopathy as diseases themselves, are not common in all people who commit some type of crime. However, there are certain similarities between their behaviors, such as a lack of empathy or constant lies towards others. In addition, people with either of these two disorders only find pleasure and satisfaction when rewards are obtained immediately.

According to some scientists , dopamine and its release in the body could be the reason why psychopaths and sociopaths are unable to focus their attention on anything other than their own benefit. This condition in their brains causes individuals to take into account the emotions of other people or the dangers that their actions could pose in the lives of others.

Individuals with psychopathic or sociopathic disorder present, in addition to the aforementioned characteristics, other behaviors such as superficial charm, cunning and intelligence. As well as the absence of nervousness, falsehood, difficulty in learning from mistakes . They also tend to have a frivolous and unstable personal life; a high self-esteem, tendency to exaggerate things and the need to lie constantly. Finally, we must bear in mind that around 3% of the population may suffer from an antisocial personality disorder , generally more common among men than women and mostly related to alcohol or drug abuse, or due to having a conflictive environment. .  

Elle Mcdonald

I am Elle Mcdonald Specializations in Psychology . Graduated in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Diploma of Advanced Studies in the Department of Personality, Evaluation and psychological treatments with excellent results.

First Level of Master in Clinical Psychology at the Center for Behavioral Therapists (recognized with a scientific-professional nature by the College of Psychologists)

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