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      Gambling with Rose-Tinted Glasses on: Use of Emotion-Regulation Strategies Correlates with Dysfunctional Cognitions in Gambling Disorder Patients

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          Abstract

          Background and aims

          Existing research shows that gambling disorder patients (GDPs) process gambling outcomes abnormally when compared against healthy controls (HCs). These anomalies present the form of exaggerated or distorted beliefs regarding the expected utility of outcomes and one’s ability to predict or control gains and losses, as well as retrospective reinterpretations of what caused them. This study explores the possibility that the emotional regulation strategies GDPs use to cope with aversive events are linked to these cognitions.

          Methods

          41 GDPs and 45 HCs, matched in sociodemographic variables, were assessed in gambling severity, emotion-regulation strategies (cognitive emotion-regulation questionnaire, CERQ), and gambling-related cognitions (gambling-related cognitions scale, GRCS).

          Results

          GDPs showed higher scores in all gambling-related cognition dimensions. Regarding emotion regulation, GDPs were observed to use self-blame and catastrophizing, but also positive refocusing, more often than controls. Additionally, in GDPs, putatively adaptive CERQ strategies shared a significant portion of variance with South Oaks gambling screen severity and GRCS beliefs. Shared variability was mostly attributable to the roles of refocusing on planning and putting into perspective at positively predicting severity and the interpretative bias (GDPs propensity to reframe losses in a more benign way), respectively.

          Discussion and conclusions

          Results show links between emotion-regulation strategies and problematic gambling-related behaviors and cognitions. The pattern of those links supports the idea that GDPs use emotion-regulation strategies, customarily regarded as adaptive, to cope with negative emotions, so that the motivational and cognitive processing of gambling outcomes becomes less effective in shaping gambling-related behavior.

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          Most cited references 45

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          Integration of impulsivity and positive mood to predict risky behavior: development and validation of a measure of positive urgency.

          In 3 studies, the authors developed and began to validate a measure of the propensity to act rashly in response to positive affective states (positive urgency). In Study 1, they developed a content-valid 14-item scale, showed that the measure was unidimensional, and showed that positive urgency was distinct from impulsivity-like constructs identified in 2 models of impulsive behavior. In Study 2, they showed that positive urgency explained variance in risky behavior not explained by measures of other impulsivity-like constructs, differentially explained positive mood-based risky behavior, differentiated individuals at risk for problem gambling from those not at risk, and interacted with drinking motives and expectancies as predicted to explain problem drinking behavior. In Study 3, they confirmed the hypothesis that positive urgency differentiated alcoholics from both eating-disordered and control individuals. ((c) 2007 APA, all rights reserved).
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            Emotion Regulation: Past, Present, Future

             James J Gross (1999)
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              A pathways model of problem and pathological gambling.

              At the moment, there is no single conceptual theoretical model of gambling that adequately accounts for the multiple biological, psychological and ecological variables contributing to the development of pathological gambling. Advances in this area are hampered by imprecise definitions of pathological gambling, failure to distinguish between gambling problems and problem gamblers and a tendency to assume that pathological gamblers form one, homogeneous population with similar psychological principles applying equally to all members of the class. The purpose of this paper is to advance a pathways model that integrates the complex array of biological, personality, developmental, cognitive, learning theory and ecological determinants of problem and pathological gambling. It is proposed that three distinct subgroups of gamblers manifesting impaired control over their behaviour can be identified. These groups include (a) behaviourally conditioned problem gamblers, (b) emotionally vulnerable problem gamblers and (c) antisocial, impulsivist problem gamblers. The implications for clinical management are discussed.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                jba
                JBA
                Journal of Behavioral Addictions
                J Behav Addict
                Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
                2062-5871
                2063-5303
                01 July 2016
                June 2016
                : 5
                : 2
                : 271-281
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Granada , Granada, Spain
                [2 ]Brain, Mind and Behaviour Research Center (CIMCYC), University of Granada , Granada, Spain
                [3 ]School of Psychological Sciences & Monash Institute of Cognitive and Clinical Neurosciences, Monash University , Melbourne, Australia
                [4 ]Institute of Neuroscience F. Oloriz, University of Granada , Granada, Spain
                [5 ]Granada Association of Rehabilitated Pathological Gamblers (AGRAJER), Granada, Spain
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author: Juan F. Navas; Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Granada, Campus de Cartuja, s/n. 18071, Granada, Spain; Phone: +34 958 24 78 82 Fax: +34 958 24 62 39; E-mail: jfnavas@ 123456ugr.es
                Article
                10.1556/2006.5.2016.040
                5387778
                27363462
                © 2016 The Author(s)

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Figures: 3, Tables: 3, Equations: 0, References: 47, Pages: 11
                Funding
                Funding sources: Research described in this paper has been funded by a grant to the research team from the Spanish Government (Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad, Secretaría de Estado de Invetigación, Desarrollo e Innovación; Convocatoria 2013 de Proyectos I+D de Excelencia) with reference number PSI2013-45055. The first author has been awarded with an individual research grant (Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte, Programa FPU, reference number FP13/00669).
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