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Gambling Addiction Therapy

[sh_block_quotes blockquotes=”Note: Although some behavioral conditions that do not involve ingestion of substances have similarities to substance-related disorders, only one disorder-gambling disorder-has sufficient data to be included in this section. – DSM-V, Substance-Related and Addictive Disorders.”]

Gambling Disorder and DSM-V


DSM-V reclassified pathological gambling from an impulse control disorder to addictive disorder. This paves the way for changes in how research is funded and gambling disorder is treated. Gambling disorder is a chronic condition that requires ongoing care.

Gambling Addiction Therapy


Many therapies are used for gambling addiction therapy. Psychodynamic and process therapies. Other therapies include CBT, DBT and hybrid forms of cognitive behavioral (CBT). Harm Reduction, Hypnosis, Motivational Interviewing, gambling addiction therapyand EMDR are sometimes integrated into treatment. Research finds no significant differences in effectiveness in forms of gambling addiction therapy. CBT is the most widely researched. In general, individual therapy is considered the most effective single treatment for gambling addiction.


Key Points


Regardless of your therapeutic approach, it is important to know:

1) Suicide rate of gambling addiction is higher than any other addiction. Suicide risk can be difficult to assess. With other addictions, the individual is often under the influence when they become suicidal. In contrast, a gambler may think, ‘If I don’t win back the money with this bet, I’m going to kill myself.’ It is an important element of gambling addiction therapy to assess often for suicide.

2) Giving control of all money to a family member is a standard of care for gambling addiction therapy. This includes credit cards and bank accounts.

3) 50% suffer with alcohol addiction.

4) 75% suffer with a mood disorder.

5) Couples and family therapy is essential when delivering gambling addiction therapy.

6) Medication Evaluation is often indicated.


Peer Support


Like other addictions, peer support is indicated. Gamblers Anonymous (GA) applies the tenets of Alcoholics Anonymous. Gambling addiction therapy is most effective when combined with GA. GamAnon is designated for the family and friends. Celebrate Recovery a religious based program is also effective.


The GCPG provides affordable ethics hours related to Gambling Disorder. Training opportunities.