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Gambling, Gaming & Technology Use Community of Interest

The Gambling, Gaming & Technology Use Community of Interest brings together addiction and mental health service providers, researchers and subject matter experts in the fields of gambling, technology/Internet use and video gaming to collaborate and share knowledge on emerging trends and clinical best practices.

Friends and family of people with problem gambling may experience harms although they do not gamble (or do not gamble in harmful ways) themselves. Often times, they can play a role in helping the person gambling change their behaviour in ways that reduces the harms experienced by everyone. However, these behaviour change techniques (BCTs) are not widely understood.

A team of researchers recently helped codify BCTs that family and friends used to both minimize harms for the families/friends (family focused) and to minimize harms for the person gambling themselves (gambler-focused).

The family focused classification contained 16 BCTs, and the most frequent were:

  1. professional support,
  2. financial management,
  3. planned consequences.

The gambler-focused classification contained 11 BCTs, and the most frequent were:

  1. feedback on behaviours,
  2. professional support,
  3. financial management.

How often do you engage with family and friends of those with problem gambling who aren't sure how they can help? Do any of these, or other strategies in the article surprise you or that you think are more useful?

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