In the United States alone, about 0.6% of adults have experienced gambling problems so severe that they qualify for a psychiatric diagnosis. This translates into 1,454,825 people–approximately the entire population of Phoenix, Arizona—all of whom gamble so much that it causes financial, emotional, social, and health consequences for themselves, their families, and the communities. Rates vary in other countries, as a result of different gambling opportunities, attitudes toward gambling, systems of care, and countless other factors.
Here at The BASIS, we know that raising awareness and reducing stigma about gambling disorder and other expressions of addiction can ultimately improve lives. That’s why, each March, we produce a Special Series on Gambling Disorder. Coinciding with the National Council on Problem Gambling’s Problem Gambling Awareness Month, this Special Series includes four science reviews that illustrate recent scientific advances in the field of gambling disorder. First, The WAGER reviews how significant life events, like moving and retiring, predict the development of gambling-related problems. In an op-ed, Dr. Debi LaPlante will call for healthcare providers to consider screening for Gambling Disorder and provide free resources for doing so. And we will continue our First Person series by sharing the story of a woman who in long-term recovery from gambling disorder.
We hope you will enjoy and learn from this Special Series.
— Heather Gray, Ph.D.
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