Narratives of reduction and change among patients of an internet-delivered therapy for gambling harm

Lucchini, F. and Griffiths, M.D. ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524, 2023. Narratives of reduction and change among patients of an internet-delivered therapy for gambling harm. Journal of Public Health. ISSN 1741-3842

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Aim: Shame and fear of stigma represent barriers which prevent many gamblers from seeking help. To overcome some of these obstacles, new types of professional help have emerged, based on use of telephone and information technology. The aim of this study was to offer an overview of the characteristics of high-risk gamblers who entered an internet-delivered therapy program, and provides a typology of such patients through their narratives of gambling reduction and change.

Subject and methods: Of the 4742 gamblers (83.4% males) who accessed internet-delivered therapy in Italy, the present study focuses on the 784 gamblers who began the therapy and the 177 gamblers (22.6%) who completed the treatment. By utilizing a mixed-methods approach, the present study describes the socio-economic and gambling characteristics of patients and identified outcome predictors.

Results: Compared to treatment completers, treatment dropouts had a higher propensity to use non-strategy-based games, gamble more frequently, and have a shorter history of gambling and problem gambling. The study also examined the stories of high-risk gamblers who successfully completed the therapy. Four different types of gamblers in treatment — ‘compliant’, ‘autonomous’, ‘erratic’, and ‘fragile’ — were identified.

Conclusion: The results of this study reflect the complex intertwining of individual agency and structural conditions that may affect the outcome of a therapy, providing a first insight into new ways to analyze help-seeking behavior and recovery from gambling harm.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Journal of Public Health
Creators: Lucchini, F. and Griffiths, M.D.
Publisher: Springer
Date: 30 December 2023
ISSN: 1741-3842
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 04 Jan 2024 09:36
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2024 09:36

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