Assessing and treating problem gambling: empirical status and promising trends.
ABSTRACT Ways to clinically assess and treat problem gambling evolve as our knowledge about this disorder increases. This paper summarizes current knowledge about treating problem gambling and describes developments in the assessment, psychology, and biology of problem gambling that may be important for treatment.
We reviewed recent published literature reporting advances in the assessment, psychology, and biology of problem gambling. We retained for review only controlled clinical trials in which subjects were randomized to either psychological or pharmacologic treatment.
Although several gambling treatments were found to be efficacious, support for any specific treatment modality is still limited. Cognitive-behavioural treatments were most effective. Although diagnostic assessment has improved, there are still very few measures of gambling-related variables. The contribution to gambling of sex, concurrent psychiatric disorders, cognitive distortions, and impulsivity has been described. Evidence implicating decision-making areas of the cortex and disturbances in serotonin and dopamine functioning has been reviewed. Available evidence for a genetic contribution to problem gambling is weak.
Improvements in the methodology of gambling-treatment research were discussed to advance the clinical approach to this disorder. Developments in the area of assessment, psychology, and biology of gambling should inform clinical approaches to a greater degree than they currently do. We identified the need to study different types of gambling separately, rather than combining them, as an important goal.
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ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to explore the relations between gambling, brain emotion systems, personality, self/other perception, and hopelessness in an Italian community. Dimensions of gambling, positive and negative emotions, self/other perception, personality and hopelessness were assessed in a community sample of 235 adults aged 19-59 years. Two structural models were tested. We found a significant correlation between problem gambling and impulsivity, which in association with aggressivity and negative personality dimensions may help explain the psychopathology factor, i.e. a latent variable involving neurotic personality, hopelessness, high sensation seeking, low metacognitive responsiveness, and disorganized patterns of interpersonal relationships. These results contribute to develop a theoretical framework of gambling in relation with personality factors and provide a new approach for clinical intervention of problem gambling that relies on a solid multidimensional perspective.Journal of Gambling Behavior 04/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10899-015-9543-0 · 1.28 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Pathological gambling is classified as an impulse-control disorder, although it has much in common with substance dependence and its treatment is based on treatment of substance abuse (Petry, 2005). This disorder is often accompanied by mood, anxiety, antisocial personality or substance use disorder; about three quarters of problem gamblers suffer severe depression. Psychological treatments, mainly approaches that try to change cognitive distortions about gambling, have the most empirical support. Current studies agree that CBT interventions appear to be the most effective treatment of problem gambling (Blaszczynski, 2010; Toneatto and Millar, 2004 and Raylu and Oei, 2010).Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 12/2012; 33:1082-1086. DOI:10.1016/j.sbspro.2012.01.289