Impact Factor 3.161 | CiteScore 3.13
More on impact ›

Mini Review ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Psychiatry | doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2019.00662

Addiction and the Dark Triad of Personality

  • 1Dresden University of Technology, Germany

In this article, we review associations between the Dark Triad of personality (narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathy) and addictive behaviors, both substance-related and non-substance-related. We summarize evidence from personality and clinical research and integrate it with prevailing models of addiction. Specifically, we discuss addictive behavior in the light of affect regulation, which is likely more relevant in narcissism, as well as inhibitory deficits, a putative mechanism in psychopathy. These mechanisms can be related to central motives of the respective personality constructs, such as stabilization of self-esteem in narcissism and impulsive stimulation-seeking in psychopathy. We conclude that different mechanisms might lead to similar observable behavior in narcissism and psychopathy at earlier stages of the addiction cycle, but psychopathic disinhibition might be particularly relevant at later stages. This underpins the importance of considering personality factors for the understanding and treatment of addiction.

Keywords: Dark triad, narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy, substance use, substance use disorder, Addiction

Received: 02 Jun 2019; Accepted: 15 Aug 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Jauk and Dieterich. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Emanuel Jauk, Dresden University of Technology, Dresden, Germany, emanuel.jauk@tu-dresden.de