Winnipeg Gambling and Trauma Study Short on Participants

Publish: 16.07.2017

Helping others seems to be more difficult that you might think.

Problem gamblers and traumatized gamers in the province were met with a new study offering help individuals who might be suffering from gambling-related issues but the study is finding it hard to find participants.

Gambling and Trauma Study

With a working title called Online Coping Skills Counselling for Problem Gambling and Trauma, the new study is running out of Boston University, the University of Windsor and the University of Manitoba.

The study is conducted by Dr. David Ledgerwood of Windsor University, Dr. Lisa Najavits from Boston and Dr. Tracie Afifi from Winnipeg.

The research is comparing two different types of counseling. The first one is called Seeking Safety, which is a gambling and trauma program designed by Dr. Najavits, whereas the second part is called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Problem Gambling which was created by Dr. Robert Ladoucer at the University of Laval.

The research requires at least 84 people to sign up but with only seven applicants thus far, the study conductors are finding it difficult to see their research through.

“The vast majority of people with problem gambling never seek out treatment. They’re known to be a very, very hard group to connect with.”, Dr. Lisa Najavits said.

Linking Trauma to Gambling

Najavits explained that researchers are trying to find links between problem gambling and a history of trauma, ranging from child sex abuse to car incidents and others.

Najavits’ hypothesis presumes that addressing the trauma would help problem gamblers do a lot better in dealing with gambling as it goes to the root of the problem.

The study is funded by the Manitoba Gambling Research Program through a $450,000 grant. It offers free counseling sessions – up to 12 in total – plus payment in the form of an gift card for completing research assessments.