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J Psychiatr Res. 2014 Sep;56:137-43. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2014.05.013. Epub 2014 May 27.

An 8-week stress management program in pathological gamblers: a pilot randomized controlled trial.

Author information

1
Postgraduate Course Stress Management and Health Promotion, School of Medicine, University of Athens, Soranou Ephessiou Str., 4, GR-115-27 Athens, Greece. Electronic address: klinardatou@yahoo.gr.
2
Therapeutic Program for Alcohol and Gambling Addiction of KETHEA-ALFA, Charvouri Str., 1, GR-11636, Athens, Greece.
3
Postgraduate Course Stress Management and Health Promotion, School of Medicine, University of Athens, Soranou Ephessiou Str., 4, GR-115-27 Athens, Greece.
4
Postgraduate Course Stress Management and Health Promotion, School of Medicine, University of Athens, Soranou Ephessiou Str., 4, GR-115-27 Athens, Greece; First Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital Aghia Sofia, School of Medicine, University of Athens, Thivon & Papadiamantopoulou Str., GR-115-27 Athens, Greece.

Abstract

Stress plays a major role at the onset and relapse of pathological gambling (PG), but at the same time it can also be the aftermath of gambling behavior, thus revealing a reciprocal relationship. Although the role of stress has been well-documented, there is a paucity of studies investigating the effect of an adjunctive stress management program on PG. In this 8-week parallel randomized waitlist controlled trial pathological gamblers, already in the gamblers anonymous (GA) group, were assigned randomly in two groups, with the intervention group (n = 22) receiving an additional stress management program (consisting of education on diet and exercise, stress coping methods, relaxation breathing -RB- and progressive muscle relaxation -PMR). Self-reported measures were used in order to evaluate stress, depression, anxiety, sleep quality/disturbances, life-satisfaction and daily routine. The statistical analyses for the between group differences concerning the main psychosocial study outcomes revealed a statistically significant amelioration of stress, depression, anxiety symptoms and an increase of life-satisfaction and a better daily routine in participants of the intervention group. We hope that these will encourage researchers and clinicians to adopt stress management in their future work.

KEYWORDS:

Anxiety; Depression; Gambling; Management; Pathological; Stress

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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