Gambling and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) can reduce the number of days a person gambles, reduce the amount of money they lose, help a gambler to stay away from gambling once they have stopped.
If you are a problem gambler, you will think differently from other people about your betting.
You tend to believe that you are more likely to win than you would expect by chance, in a game with random numbers, like roulette, certain numbers are more likely to come up than others, winning twice in a row means that you are on a “winning streak” – so you bet larger and larger sums; that you are more likely to win at a game of chance if you are familiar with it; that certain rituals can bring you luck; that having lost, you can somehow win back your losses by gambling more.
How does CBT work?
CBT is given in around 10 one-hour sessions.
The sessions focus on these ways of thinking, but also on how you feel and behave when you want to bet or when you are gambling.
CBT helps you to work out more helpful ways of thinking and behaving.
A diary helps you to keep track of your improvement.
In the months following treatment, follow-up CBT sessions in a group seem to help people stay away from gambling longer.
How does CBT compare with other treatments?
We don’t know yet - there have not been enough large studies to be clear about this (134).
If you require help and advice Counselling and Psychotherapy may be provided via Skype and FaceTime in the comfort of your home, office or any place of your choice.