Self-deception as a mechanism for the maintenance of drug addiction

Jose Miguel Martinez-Gonzalez, Raquel Vilar-Lopez, Elisardo Becona-Iglesias, Antonio Verdejo-Garcia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Background: This study was aimed at: (i) examining levels of self- deception in substance dependent individuals following addiction treatment, and (ii) examining the association between participants? levels of self-deception and (a) personality disorders, (b) addiction-related beliefs, (c) duration of abstinence, and (d) estimates of craving. Method: We administered self-report questionnaires of self-deception and mixtification, and core beliefs related to addiction and craving. The sample comprised 79 outpatients who were consecutively recruited at the Centro Provincial de Drogodependencias in Granada: 87.3 were males and the mean age was 37.68 years old. Thirty-four percent of participants were diagnosed with comorbid personality disorders. Results: Results showed that individuals with substance dependence exhibit elevated scores of self- deception, particularly in the domains of active denial, selective amnesia, projection, and confabulation. Individuals with comorbid personality disorders display greater levels of self-deception compared to individuals without dual diagnosis. Conclusions: Moreover, there is a significant association between levels of self-deception and addiction-related beliefs and craving. In addition, there is a negative association between levels of self-deception and duration of abstinence
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13-19
Number of pages7
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • self-deception
  • personality disorders
  • treatment
  • core beliefs
  • craving

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