I’m a forensic psychiatrist and I’m always asked how easy it is to spot a psychopath – here are some ways you can tell

Is it easy to determine whether someone is a psychopath or not?

An expert has answered that question in a fascinating video on YouTube.

London-based forensic psychiatrist Dr Sohom Das, 44, has a channel called A psych for painful mindswhere he covers a range of mental health and crime-related topics.

In his YouTube biography, he is described as a professional forensic psychiatrist and expert witness who discusses his own (anonymized) real-life cases.

And when it comes to the question of identifying psychopaths, his biography suggests he is one of the best qualified people to ask, saying, “Dr. Das (MBChB, BSc, MSc, MRCPsych) has ‘personally assessed hundreds of patients in prisons, psychiatric wards and closed courts across the UK.’

According to an expert, it can be difficult to identify psychopaths at first because they can appear extremely charming at first (stock image)

In a YouTube video titled Recognizing a psychopath: is it EASY or HARD?Dr. Das shares his views on the subject.

In the clip, Dr. Das – who has worked with many formal clinical psychopaths – reveals that there is a question he is regularly asked during interviews and podcasts.

The question is: ‘How do you recognize a psychopath? How do you know if someone you recently met is a psychopath?’

The American Psychological Association (APA) says that psychopath is a former name for a person with antisocial personality disorder.

The APA describes some of the ways the disorder can manifest in people’s behavior and lists repeated violations of the law; exploitation of others; deception; impulsiveness; aggressiveness; reckless disregard for the safety of self and others; and irresponsibility – accompanied by a lack of guilt, remorse and empathy.

What is a ‘psychopath’?

According to the American Psychological Association (APA), psychopath is a former name for a person with antisocial personality disorder.

It describes the presentation of the disorder and says it is the presence of a chronic and pervasive tendency to disregard and violate the rights of others.

Manifestations include repeated violations of the law, exploitation of others, deception, impulsiveness, aggressiveness, reckless disregard for the safety of self and others, and irresponsibility, accompanied by a lack of guilt, remorse and empathy.

The disorder is known by several names, including dyssocial personality, psychopathic personality, and sociopathic personality disorder.

It is one of the most researched personality disorders and the most difficult to treat.

During his video, Dr. Das says, “My answer is this: It’s actually very, very difficult to recognize them, almost by definition.”

The forensic psychiatrist explains why this is the case and says that psychopaths are ‘very good at being a kind of chameleon and getting lost in the situation’.

Plus, he adds that they’re “charming…they’re friendly…they’re entertaining.”

“So I don’t think you can really recognize a psychopath, at least not the first few times you meet them,” says Dr. Das.

However, this must remain the case, the expert explains.

He continues, “Over time you start to realize that they are quite manipulative.

“So they’re using you for something.

“They’re not your friends because they like your talk, and they like your jokes.

“They are your friends because they want to get something from you somehow.

“They’re trying to manipulate you.”

And it’s not just you who may be the target of this manipulation, he explains in the video.

Dr. Das continues: ‘You may also notice that they do this to other people around them.’

This can manifest itself in them having many friends and contacts because they are friendly and charming.

However, these connections are not necessarily sustainable because, as Dr. Das says, “they use people and then move on.”

He continues, “They don’t have any kind of long-term friends that they have an emotional connection with.

“They just have people they get something from and then move on.”

Dr. Sohom Das can be found at Tweet, InstagramAnd TikTokas well as YouTube.