Gambling Disorders 360°

Exploring the latest news, issues and research relating to gambling disorders and responsible gaming

Reminder: Seed Grant Applications Due July 1!

by: Institute Staff | Jun 16, 2010

The Institute for Research on Gambling Disorders offers three types of project grants to support research on gambling disorders, and the application deadline for our Seed Grants is just around the corner – July 1, 2010.

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Louisiana Treatment Center is a Model for State-funded Programs

by: Institute Staff | Jun 8, 2010

Inpatient treatment programs have been helping people with substance-use disorders for decades, but only recently have they been used in the treatment of pathological gambling. The Louisiana Center of Recovery (CORE) was one of the first inpatient treatment facilities dedicated to treating disordered gambling. The following is an excerpt from the article, “Louisiana Treatment Center is a Model for State-Funded Programs,” which was originally published in the spring 2010 edition of Responsible Gaming Quarterly.

In June of 1999, the state of Louisiana’s Office for Addictive Disorders, with support from the Louisiana Association on Compulsive Gambling and the state’s casinos and gaming companies, opened a one-of-a-kind residential treatment center for those suffering from pathological gambling. It was called the Center of Recovery (CORE) and, at that time, was the only state-funded center with a primary focus on treating gambling disorders.

“There was a visionary thinker, Jake Hadley, in the Office for Addictive Disorders, and he felt that pathological gambling was a major public health concern for the citizens of Louisiana,” said CORE executive director Reece Middleton. “He wanted to address the problem in a proactive fashion, and thought those affected would benefit most from a residential treatment facility.”

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Understanding Addiction through Photography: “Expressions of Addiction”

by: Institute Staff | Jun 4, 2010

The study of addiction often involves quantifying personal information to make it usable in objective research. This process is an important part of developing sound science that increases understanding about gambling disorders and related addictions, and can inform the development of effective prevention, treatment and education efforts. In efforts to raise awareness about addictive disorders and address the stigma surrounding them, the arts can help translate scientific topics into compelling educational information for a broader audience.

One example of the arts helping to translate science is “Expressions of Addiction,” an online collection of photographs taken by addictions researcher and award-winning photographer Dr. Howard J. Shaffer. Expressions of Addiction was created to increase awareness and understanding of addiction and contribute to community programs and resources to prevent and treat addiction. The exhibit features pictures of people in various stages and expressions of addiction, including problems with alcohol, drugs and gambling, along with descriptions of how addiction has affected their lives. Shaffer, a licensed psychologist and director of the Division on Addictions at Cambridge Health Alliance, is one of the foremost researchers on gambling disorders.

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Looking Back: Perspectives on Changes in the Field of Research on Gambling Disorders

by: Donald W. Black, Adam S. Goodie, Harold Wynne and Anneke Goudriaan | Jun 3, 2010

The recently proposed changes to the definition of pathological gambling for the next edition of the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) prompted us to think about the dizzying pace of change within the field over the past 30 years.

In this month’s Issues & Insights, four researchers reflect on the progress of the field by answering the question, “What has been the most significant change in how scientists look at disordered gambling over the past 30 years?” Their conclusions range from the inclusion of pathological gambling in the DSM-III in 1980 to advances in understanding the neurobiology of disordered gambling behavior. All agree that there have been tremendous advances in the field in the past three decades. You can read their full comments in June’s Issues & Insights.

What do you think has been the most significant change in gambling research during the past 30 years? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.

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New Research Examines Gender Differences in Disordered Gambling, Natural Recovery and Treatment Seeking

by: Institute Staff | May 27, 2010

Do men and women have the same experience with gambling problems or with recovery? Or, are there gender differences that have been observed in studies of other addictive behaviors? The following is an excerpt from the article, “New Study Explores Gender Differences in Treatment-Seeking, Recovery,” which was originally published in the spring 2010 edition of Responsible Gaming Quarterly.

Women are more likely than men to seek treatment for and recover from pathological gambling, although the vast majority of people are able to recover from pathological gambling without formal treatment, according to a new study published in Twin Research and Human Genetics.

The study, conducted by Wendy S. Slutske from the University of Missouri, Alex Blaszczynski from the University of Sydney and Nicholas G. Martin from the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, is the first ever to document gender differences in treatment-seeking and recovery from pathological gambling. Participants in the study were 4,764 members of the Australian Twin Registry Cohort II sample.

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Upcoming NCRG Webinars Address Comorbidity, Self-Exclusion

by: Institute Staff | May 24, 2010

The National Center for Responsible Gaming kicks off its 2010 NCRG Webinar Series on June 17, 2010 from 2 p.m. - 3 p.m. EDT with “Co-Occurring Disorders: How Research is Informing the Identification and Treatment of Pathological Gambling.” In this session, Dr. Marc Potenza of Yale University School of Medicine will discuss how the high rate of co-occurring disorders among disordered gamblers affects how we understand and treat pathological gambling, and the influence of this research on the proposed changes to the definition of pathological gambling in the DSM-V. The program is free but advance registration is required.

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Reminder: Exploration Grant Applications Due June 1!

by: Institute Staff | May 21, 2010

The Institute for Research on Gambling Disorders offers three types of project grants to support research on gambling disorders, and the application deadline for our Exploration Grants is just around the corner – June 1, 2010. Exploration Grants provide $5,000 for a period of 12 months and are intended to support pilot studies or other small projects.

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New Research on the Impact of Having a Parent with Gambling Problems

by: Institute Staff | May 19, 2010

The following is an excerpt from the article, “All in the Family: New Research on the Impact of Having a Parent with Gambling Problems,” which was originally published in the spring 2010 edition of Responsible Gaming Quarterly.

Scientists and clinicians have long speculated that gambling disorders are more prevalent in families with a history of problem gambling behavior. The role that heredity plays in the development of a gambling disorder is important to research focused on the causes of the disorder and to assessment and treatment. Research has started to unravel the genetic versus environmental factors. A University of Minnesota study, “Characteristics of Pathological Gamblers with a Problem Gambling Parent,” recently published in The American Journal on Addiction, is the first attempt to determine whether having a problem gambling parent is associated with any unique clinical features in adults with pathological gambling (PG) (Schreiber, Odlaug, Kim, & Grant, 2009).

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Addressing Responsible Gaming in Indian Country

by: Institute Staff | May 17, 2010

Tribal Government GamingThis spring, Tribal Government Gaming magazine published a feature article about the responsible gaming measures already in place at tribal casinos and how some of these operations are expanding their efforts to include science-based technological innovations. The article – “Tribal Responsibility: Addressing Responsible Gaming in Indian Country” – includes a look at how San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino is using the National Center for Responsible Gaming’s PEER program and EMERGE online employee training program to enhance existing training and “create a whole new level of awareness… about the science behind pathological gambling,” according to Dianna Scina, guest services director.

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New Edition of The WAGER Compares Gambling Policies for European Athletes, NCAA Student Athletes

by: Institute Staff | May 13, 2010

The WAGER (Worldwide Addiction Gambling Education Report) is a great resource for keeping up with new research on gambling and gambling disorders. This online science review is published by the Division on Addictions at Cambridge Health Alliance, a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School. The WAGER is one of a number of publications available through the Brief Addiction Science Information Source (BASIS).

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