Cognitive-behavior therapy for problem gambling: a critique of current treatments and proposed new unified approach.

Journal article


Tolchard, B (2016). Cognitive-behavior therapy for problem gambling: a critique of current treatments and proposed new unified approach. Journal of Mental Health.
AuthorsTolchard, B
Abstract

BACKGROUND: There is evidence supporting the use of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) in the treatment of problem gambling. Despite this, little is known about how CBT works and which particular approach is most effective. This paper aims to synthesize the evidence for current CBT and propose a more unified approach to treatment. METHODS: A literature review and narrative synthesis of the current research evidence of CBT for the treatment of problem gambling was conducted, focusing on the underlying mechanisms within the treatment approach. RESULTS: Several CBT approaches were critiqued. These can be divided into forms of exposure therapy (including aversion techniques, systematic desensitization and other behavioral experiments) those focusing on cognitive restructuring techniques (such as reinforcement of nongambling activity, use of diaries, motivational enhancement and audio-playback techniques and third wave techniques including mindfulness. Findings, in relation to the treatment actions, from this synthesis are reported. CONCLUSIONS: The debate surrounding the treatment of problem gambling has been conducted as an either/or rather than a both/and discourse. This paper proposes a new, unified approach to the treatment of problem gambling that incorporates the best elements of both exposure and cognitive restructuring techniques, alongside the use of techniques borrowed from mindfulness and other CBT approaches.

KeywordsProblem gambling; cognitive-behavioral therapy; theory; 1103 Clinical Sciences; 1701 Psychology; Psychiatry
Year2016
JournalJournal of Mental Health
PublisherLondon South Bank University
ISSN1360-0567
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/09638237.2016.1207235
Publication dates
Print18 Oct 2016
Publication process dates
Deposited06 Mar 2017
Accepted10 May 2016
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY 4.0
Page range1-8
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https://openresearch.lsbu.ac.uk/item/871y0

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