自恋是一种心理障碍，是随着时间的推移在生物和环境因素的参与下逐渐发展起来的。研究表明，自恋与基因有关。据说，父母自恋的孩子最容易自恋，因此自恋成为一种自然的、可遗传的性格特征。遗传学家也开始将基因的特殊差异与人格障碍联系起来。2007年发表在《国际神经精神药理学杂志》(International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology)上的一项研究表明，一种被称为色氨酸羟化胺(tryptophan hydroxylasse -2)的特定基因可能与某些人格障碍(包括自恋型人格障碍)的发生有关。色氨酸羟甲基-2有助于调节血清素的生成，血清素是大脑中参与情绪调节的一种重要化学物质。自恋可以早在学龄前就被触发，并可能随着时间的推移而发展。亲子关系包括不同的教养方式是自恋发展的中心。人们认为自恋可能是父母拒绝的结果。Kohut公司的一项研究将自恋归因于父母对孩子的不一致和缺乏同理心。通过这种方式，孩子会寻求他人的关注，因为父母可能缺乏这种关注。孩子可能会表现到通过自我认知的才能来提升自己的程度，从而从别人那里得到他无法从父母那里得到的积极评价。空洞的表扬会让孩子觉得自己有权利，而缺乏对表扬感到满意的真正自信。孩子可能会相信他只能相信自己。与此相反，自恋也可能是父母溺爱的结果。如果父母给孩子不恰当的正面评价，孩子可能会产生不恰当的自我评价。他或她可能认为自己是一个伟大和权力的人。
Narcissism is a psychological disorder that is gradually developed over time by the involvement of biological and environmental factors. According to research, Narcissism has something to do with genetics. It is said that children who have Narcissistic parents are most likely to develop Narcissism hence making it a natural and heritable character trait. Geneticists have also started to relate the existence of particular differences in genes with personality disorders. According to a study featured in the 2007 issue of the “International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology”, a particular gene referred to as tryptophan hydroxylase-2 may be associated in developing certain personality disorders, including narcissistic personality disorder. Tryptophan hydroxylase-2 aids in regulating the production of serotonin, an important brain chemical involved in mood regulation.Narcissism can be triggered as early as preschool years and may develop over the passage of time. Parent-child relationships including the different styles of parenting are the center of the development of Narcissism. It is believed that narcissism would likely develop as a result of parental rejection. A study from Kohut attributed narcissism to the inconsistency and lack of empathy of parents to their child. With this, the child seeks attention from others because it presumably is lacking from his parents. The child may behave to the extent of promoting himself through his self-perceived talent to gain positive comments from others which he can’t receive from his parents. Empty Praises causes the child to feel entitled while lacking the true confidence necessary to feel good about them. The child may then believe he can trust nobody but himself. In contrary to that, narcissism may also develop as a result of parental indulgence. A child may develop an inappropriate high self-appraisal if his parents give him inappropriate positive remarks. He or she may view himself as a person with grandeur and power.