As the saying goes, "everybody lies." People lie about anything and everything under the sun, and they are likely to lie to anyone and everyone under the sun. Some social scientists have found that deception - and self-deception - may be part of the core that allows people to maintain their social natures, but that doesn't mean that lying should be applied to everything. The fact is, people will lie for a wide range of reasons, and more often than not, people will attempt to lie to their doctors.

Lying to one's doctors about certain things isn't something new. Hippocrates, the man considered to be the father of modern medicine, was quite aware that his patients were likely to lie to him, and would often measure their pulse rates to check for truthfulness in the statements they made. Doctors in the modern world still have to deal with patients who lie, and many suspect that what patients lie about has not changed much over the ages. The modern medical practitioner can expect to be lied to about things like overindulging in alcoholic substances, eating questionable amounts of junk food, smoking, illegal drug use, unprotected sex, and other unhealthy habits.

It isn't always clear to patients that omitting information or outright falsifying answers to a doctor's questions can just cause them a lot more trouble in the medical arena. Many will lie about unhealthy habits to avoid a lecture from their doctors, with an estimated 13% of all patients admitting that they lied to their doctors. One should be careful not to discount the possibility that they might have been lying on the survey, too. It isn't just habits that people lie about, though. An estimated 40% of all patients lie about following the treatment plan, and another 30% lied about their exercise and diet regimens. All of this is information that could potentially be useful for a doctor to know, even if the patient may find it humiliating to admit to.