Types of Intervention

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Biological Interventions

There are nicotine patches, chewing gum etc for smokers to help alleviate the craving.

No drug has yet been approved in the UK as a treatment for pathological gambling, however a link has been found between pathological gambling and a serotonin dysfunction, which means that SSRI's could be helpful as studies done have shown an improvement.

A drug called naltraxone blocks dopamine receptors which should help reduce the pleasure experienced when gambling thus reducing the urge to gamble.

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Psychological Interventions

Research has been done that shows reinforcement can be used to intervene with addictions. Using a method such as token economy whereby a reward of sorts is given to the individual for not engaging in the addictive behaviour.

A study done found that using monetary rewards members of the group who were given rewards engaged significantly less in taking the drug then the other group.

The problem with reinforcement interventions is that they do not address the underlying problem it also then cant help provide a treatment in preventing it happening in the first place.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy can help to alter the individuals perception of a behaviour and to teach them new ways of coping with the cravings.

CBT has a lot of supporting evidence and a research study found that after treatment 86% of participants no longer fulfilled the DSM's characteristics for pathological gambling

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Public Health Interventions and Legislations

The NIDA Study: National Institute on Drug Abuse: Was set up in order to help intervene with people with social or personal problems with drug abuse.

Telephone smoking and quitline services:

A meta-analysis by Stead et al (2006) found that people who got phone calls from a councillor had 50% more chance of succeeding giving up smoking compared to those who only got self help towards giving up.

Anti-Smoking Legislation:

In July 2007 a legislation came into effect that banned smoking in public buildings in the UK, although it intended to protect the public from passive smoking it has been found that is has given smokers a more of a supportive environment to quit finding. Found a quarter of a million people quit smoking in the few months after the legislation came in. The smoking ban had a rebound effect with less people trying to give up after the ban than in the previous 9 months.

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