Withdrawal and Tolerance Phenomenon in Problem Gambling

  • authors:

    Alex Blaszczynski, Lia Nower, Louise Sharpe, Michael Walker
  • published in

    : 2008
  • summary

    : The phenomenological similarities between gambling and substance dependence have led to the conceptualization of pathological gambling as an addictive disorder. Tolerance and withdrawal are important features of both disorders, suggesting commonalities in the neurobiological processes associated with neuroadaptational underpinnings. However, there are few empirical studies supporting the presence of tolerance and withdrawal reported in the gambling literature. Moreover, there are no studies comparing the equivalence of tolerance and withdrawal between gambling and alcohol dependence. This study compared tolerance and withdrawal features in samples of gamblers, alcoholics and gamblers who also met criteria for alcohol dependence. In contrast to the addiction model, findings indicate that, while a majority of participants increased bet size, the motivation to do so was not for excitement or to maintain arousal levels as indicated by the DSM-IV-TR but because of cognitive factors related to winning. Results supported the notion that pathological gamblers experienced similar levels of withdrawal symptom severity as alcohol-dependent participants. Further research is needed to evaluate whether those symptoms result from the inability to gamble or from the loss of an avoidant stress coping strategy.
  • related url

    : http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~content=a7941370...

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  • type

    : article in journal
  • publisher

    : Routledge, part of the Taylor & Francis Group
  • is part of a publication

    : International Gambling Studies
  • volume

    : 8
  • issue

    : 2
  • original language

    : English
  • article pagination

    : start page: 179 - end page: 192
  • keywords

    : problem gambling
  • Article entered in GambLIB database on nov. 21. 2008, 10:11
  • Item added by staff