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Home > Exploring pathways to gambling: proposing the integrated risk and protective factors model of gambling types.

Hearn, Natalie L and Ireland, Jane L and Eslea, Mike and Fisk, John E (2020) Exploring pathways to gambling: proposing the integrated risk and protective factors model of gambling types. Journal of Gambling Studies, . doi: 10.1007/s10899-020-09929-2.

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Three linked studies, testing key aspects of the Pathways towards Problem and Pathological Gambling Model (Blaszczynski and Nower in Addiction 87(5):487-499, 2002), are presented. Study one comprised 204 students and 490 gambling forum users. It predicted differences in gambling severity, mental health and substance use across different motives for gambling. Those with a primary social motive for gambling displayed less severe gambling and anxiety than those without, with the primary coping subgroup displaying the most anxiety and depression. Those who gambled primarily to enhance positive affect reported severe gambling. Study two comprised 404 gambling forum users and 265 students. Similar groups to the Pathways Model emerged, with a behaviourally conditioned and an emotionally vulnerable group. Unexpectedly, however, those in the emotionally vulnerable group reported more severe cognitive distortions than the behaviourally conditioned group. The final study, 378 gambling forum users and 201 students, found, as predicted, that three distinct gambling groups emerged; (1) those with lower levels of psychopathology and higher levels of protective factors; (2) those with heightened pre-existing anxiety and depression, and moderate levels of protective factors; and (3) those with heightened impulsivity, psychopathology, offending behaviour and the least protective factors. Three gambling groups are consequently presented (Social Gambler; Affect-Regulation Gambler; Antisocial Gambler) alongside the proposed Integrated Risk and Protective Factors Model of Gambling Types (IRPF-MGT). Directions for future research and implications for practice are outlined.

Item Type
Publication Type
International, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
Behavioural addiction
21 January 2020
Identification #
doi: 10.1007/s10899-020-09929-2

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