Neurocognitive components of gambling disorder: Implications for policy, prevention , and treatment


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Neurocognitive components of gambling disorder: Implications for policy, prevention , and treatment
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Harm Reduction for Problem Gambling: A Public Health Approach
Navas Juan F., Billieux Joël, Verdejo-García Antonio, Perales José C.
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The present chapter aims to describe the psychobiological bases of gambling disorder (GD), and to identify how neuroscience research could inform better prevention and treatment strategies. In the first section, we describe the characteristics shared by patients with gambling disorder (PGD), and revisit the literature showing that GD is in essence a disorder of learning. Among vulnerabilities, we highlight factors incrementing the allure of gambling, making it more rewarding, or strengthening its negatively reinforcing properties.
Second, we pinpoint the variables contributing to individual differences within the PGD population, with a particular focus on emotion regulation. Dysregulation of automatic (modelfree) emotion regulation is suggested to be a complicating factor of GD, and a transdiagnostic vulnerability factor for psychopathology beyond GD. Dysregulation of controlled (model-based) emotion regulation strategies, along with gambling-related cognitive distortions, are hypothesised to contribute to self-deceptive thinking in some gamblers. Lastly, all these variables are integrated into a dimensional model (the Gambling Space Model), aimed at updating previous cluster-based proposals to subtype PGD, by incorporating recent neurocognitive evidence. The implications of the model are discussed, and we address its implications on policy and regulation. Additionally, we discuss whether or not other putative behavioural addictions should be ascribed the same consideration. Eventually, we analyse how better understanding individual differences could contribute to better treatment and prevention designs.
Gambling Disorder, Neurosciences, Decision making
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10/01/2020 10:30
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27/01/2020 17:32
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