II. Type

  1. Process Addiction

III. Epidemiology

  1. Compulsive gamblers in U.S. estimated: 5 Million
  2. U.S. Gambling legal in every state except Utah, Hawaii
  3. Casino profits: $250,000 net profit per slot machine

IV. Casino Psychology

  1. Constant sound of other people wining
    1. Ringing of slots, and coins clinking from machine
  2. No windows and very few clocks
    1. Timeless environment
  3. Chips exchanged for money
    1. "Not real money being thrown around"
  4. Free Alcohol
    1. Disoriented, uninhibited
  5. "Air purification"
    1. Oxygen supplementation pumped into casino in evening
  6. Intermittent Reinforcement Schedule
    1. Occasional gambler wins and keeps them playing
  7. Sensation of expectation
    1. "Near wins": Hit 7, 7, and part of a 7
    2. No increase chance of win, but sensation of near win

V. Types of gamblers

  1. Action Gamblers
    1. Often men gambling in groups around craps table
    2. Driven by
      1. Grandiosity
      2. Control
      3. Fame (on a stage)
      4. Respect
      5. Action, Excitement
    3. Winning does not matter
      1. Money is only to get gambler to action
      2. Win or lose, they keep playing
  2. Escape Gamblers
    1. Often women gambling alone at slot machines
    2. Reinforced by sensation
      1. Stimulant
      2. Pain killer or Tranquilizer effect
        1. Escape from reality: "Zone out"
      3. Anonymous relationship with slot machine
        1. Machine used for companionship

VI. Stages

  1. Winning Stage
    1. Gambler has success and walks home with easy profit
  2. Losing Stage
    1. Continues gambling despite losses
    2. Action or Escape reinforces gambling behavior
  3. Desperation Stage (Follows bail-out)
    1. Risk everything to support habit
  4. Suicide or Insanity

VII. Effects

  1. As with other addictions, willing to sacrifice
    1. Relationships
    2. Savings
  2. Willing to do anything to support habit
    1. Bank robbery
    2. Kidnapping

VIII. Prognosis

  1. Highest Suicide rate of any addiction

IX. Resources

  1. Gamblers Anonymous

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Ontology: Gambling, Pathological (C0030662)

Definition (MEDLINEPLUS)

Many people enjoy gambling, whether it's betting on a horse or playing poker on the Internet. Most people who gamble don't have a problem, but some lose control of their gambling. Signs of problem gambling include

  • Always thinking about gambling
  • Lying about gambling
  • Spending work or family time gambling
  • Feeling bad after you gamble, but not quitting
  • Gambling with money you need for other things

If you have concerns about your gambling, ask for help. Your health care provider can work with you to find the treatment that's best for you.

NIH: Natonal Institutes of Health

Definition (NCI) A disorder characterized by a preoccupation with gambling and the excitement that gambling with increasing risk provides. Pathological gamblers are unable to cut back on their gambling, despite the fact that it may lead them to lie, steal, or lose a significant relationship, job, or educational opportunity.
Concepts Mental or Behavioral Dysfunction (T048)
MSH D005715
ICD9 312.31
ICD10 F63.0
SnomedCT 18085000, 284524008, 192501004
DSM4 312.31
English Pathological gambling, Pathological Gambling, Gamblings, Pathological, Pathological Gamblings, GAMBLING, PATHOLOGIC, PATHOL GAMBLING, GAMBLING PATHOL, pathological gambling, pathological gambling (diagnosis), Gambling addiction, Gambling pathological, Gambling, Pathological, gambling pathological, compulsive gambling, gambling addiction, addictions gambling, gambling compulsive, addiction gambling, Gambling, Pathologic, Pathological gambling disorder, Gambling disorder, Compulsive Gambling, Compulsive gambling (finding), Pathological gambling (disorder), Compulsive gambling, Compulsive gambling (disorder), betting; addiction, betting; pathological, compulsion; gambling, dependence; gambling, gambling; addiction, gambling; compulsion, gambling; dependence, gambling; pathological, addiction; betting, addiction; gambling, pathologic; gambling, pathological; betting
Dutch gokverslaving, afhankelijkheid; gokken, compulsie; gokken, gokken; afhankelijkheidssyndroom, gokken; compulsie, gokken; pathologisch, gokken; verslaving, pathologisch; gokken, pathologisch; wedden, verslaving; gokken, verslaving; wedden, wedden; pathologisch, wedden; verslaving, pathologisch gokken, Pathologisch gokken
French Dépendance du jeu, Jeu pathologique
German Spielsucht, Pathologisches Glücksspiel, Pathologisches Spielen, pathologisches Spielen, Krankhaftes Glücksspiel
Italian Dipendenza dal gioco d'azzardo, Gioco d'azzardo patologico
Portuguese Vício do jogo, Jogo patológico, Jogo Patológico
Spanish Adicción al juego, juego compulsivo (trastorno), juego compulsivo, juego patológico (trastorno), juego patológico, ludomanía, ludopatía, Juego patológico, Jugador Patológico
Japanese 賭博常習, 病的賭博, ビョウテキトバク, トバクジョウシュウ
Czech Hráčství patologické, Patologické hráčství, patologické gamblerství, patologické hráčství
Korean 병적 도박
Hungarian Szerencsejáték szenvedély, Patológiás játékszenvedély, Szerencsejáték addictio
Norwegian Patologisk spilleavhengighet, Patologisk spillelidenskap, Spillegalskap