Development and validation of the Maladaptive Daydreaming Scale (MDS)

TitleDevelopment and validation of the Maladaptive Daydreaming Scale (MDS)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsSomer, E, Lehrfeld, J, Bigelsen, J, Jopp, D
JournalConsciousness and Cognition
Date Publishedjan
Keywordsfantasy proneness, maladaptive daydreaming, mind-wandering

This study describes the development of the Maladaptive Daydreaming Scale (MDS), a 14-item self-report instrument designed to gauge abnormal fantasizing. Our sample consisted of 447 English-speaking individuals from 45 different countries. A 3-correlated-factors model best presented the underlying dimensions Yearning, Kinesthesia and Impairment, capturing related rewarding experiences as well as psychological impairment of maladaptive daydreaming. MDS scores were associated with obsessive–compulsive behavior and thoughts, dissociative absorption, attention deficit, and high sense of presence during daydreaming, but less with psychotic symptoms. The MDS and its subscale demonstrated good validity, sound internal consistency and temporal stability and discriminated well between self-identified individuals with and without maladaptive daydreaming. Considering the instrument’s high sensitivity and specificity levels, it seems an excellent measure for future investigation of MD that will, hopefully, shed light on the etiology and psycho-biological mechanisms involved in this mental condition, as well as on the development of effective MD treatment methods.

Refereed DesignationRefereed