Ikke-suicidal selvskade - et afhængighedssyndrom?


  • Lotte Rubæk
  • Bo Møhl


It is a common clinical experience that individuals with non-suicidal self-injury, especially cutters, intensify their self-harming behavior and develop an addiction-like condition as time goes by. Some researchers have explained this addiction-like condition as a result of loss of impulse control, while others have pointed out that non-suicidal self-injury
develops into a real psychological and/or physiological addiction (auto addiction). In this study, a sample of adult psychiatric patients (N = 58) is examined, using a questionnaire for addiction to self-harm. The WHO ICD-10 criteria for dependence syndrome (addiction) normally used in connection with drugs or alcohol, are reformulated and adapted to self-harm. 88% (N = 49) of the respondents meet WHO’s criteria for being
addicted to non-suicidal self-injury, e.g. they hurt themselves more and more often, have cravings for self-injury and experience abstinence symptoms if it is not possible for them to hurt themselves. 79% (N = 46) report that they injure themselves impulsively and 42% (N = 23) do not feel pain when they self-injure. A positive correlation between impulsiveness and absence of pain experience is found. It is concluded that addiction to self-injury occurs as an interaction of positive and negative reinforcement.





Rubæk, L., & Møhl, B. (2017). Ikke-suicidal selvskade - et afhængighedssyndrom?. Psyke &Amp; Logos, 37(2), 205–219. Hentet fra https://tidsskrift.dk/psyke/article/view/25748