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Psychological factors, sociodemographic characteristics, and coping mechanisms associated with the self-stigma of problem gambling

journal contribution
posted on 20.04.2018, 00:00 by Nerilee Hing, Alexander Russell
Background and aims: Few studies have examined the stigma of problem gambling and little is known about those who internalize this prejudice as damaging self-stigma. This paper aimed to identify psychological factors, sociodemographic characteristics, and coping mechanisms associated with the self-stigma of problem gambling. Methods: An online survey was conducted on 177 Australian adults with a current gambling problem to measure selfstigma, self-esteem, social anxiety, self-consciousness, psychological distress, symptom severity, most problematic gambling form, stigma coping mechanisms, and sociodemographic characteristics. Results: All variables significantly correlated with self-stigma were considered for inclusion in a regression model. A multivariate linear regression indicated that higher levels of self-stigma were associated with: being female, being older, lower self-esteem, higher problem gambling severity score, and greater use of secrecy (standardized coefficients: 0.16, 0.14, -0.33, 0.23, and 0.15, respectively). Strongest predictors in the model were self-esteem, followed by symptom severity score. Together, predictors in the model accounted for 38.9% of the variance in self-stigma. Discussion and conclusions: These results suggest that the self-stigma of problem gambling may be driven by similar mechanisms as the selfstigma of other mental health disorders, and impact similarly on self-esteem and coping. Thus, self-stigma reduction initiatives used for other mental health conditions may be effective for problem gambling. In contrast, however, the self-stigma of problem gambling increased with female gender and older age, which are associated with gaming machine problems. This group should, therefore, be a target population for efforts to reduce or better cope with the self-stigma of problem gambling. © 2017 The Author(s).

Funding

Category 2 - Other Public Sector Grants Category

History

Volume

6

Issue

3

Start Page

416

End Page

424

Number of Pages

9

eISSN

2063-5303

ISSN

2062-5871

Publisher

Akademiai Kiado, Hungary

Additional Rights

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.

Peer Reviewed

Yes

Open Access

Yes

Acceptance Date

07/08/2017

Era Eligible

Yes

Journal

Journal of Behavioral Addictions

Licence

Exports

CQUniversity

Licence

Exports