Waking self-hypnosis efficacy in cognitive-behavioral treatment for pathological gambling: An effectiveness clinical assay

Abstract

Cognitive-behavioral therapy for pathological gambling has a long-term success rate of more than 50%. This study evaluated the effect of self-hypnosis in cognitive-behavioral treatment of pathological gamblers. Forty-nine participants were assigned to 2 groups. Both groups received a cognitive-behavioral protocol, and Group 1, the no-hypnosis group, received an 11-session intervention and Group 2, the hypnosis group, received 7 sessions that included self-hypnosis. Both groups were equal in gambling chronicity, frequency, intensity, change motivation, and problems derived from gambling. All participants reported significant improvement in gambling behavior and consequences at both treatment end and 6-month follow-up. Data show no differences between the interventions in abstinence, therapeutic compliance, fulfillment, and satisfaction. Results suggest that self-hypnosis reinforces treatment and can be a supportive technique for future brief interventions.

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