In Problem Gambling, Dr. Nancy M. Petry discusses and illustrates her brief, cognitive–behavioral approach to treating clients with gambling problems. Her manualized approach includes handouts and homework emphasizing self-monitoring and motivation to change.
In this session, Dr. Petry works with a 21-year-old man named Brian who gambles four to five times per week. He works delivering pizzas and makes good tips, attends junior college, and plans to go to a 4-year college. He gambles on riverboat casinos, regularly plays poker with friends, and also places bets with bookies.
Dr. Petry illustrates the first of her eight-session program, demonstrating the start of the treatment process. Brian is typical of a younger problem gambler who has begun to develop some substantial issues related to gambling but, nevertheless, is in some degree of denial. Dr. Petry demonstrates how to integrate the cognitive–behavioral therapy within this context and thereby highlights the adaptability of this approach for a variety of individuals with gambling problems.