Should GPs routinely screen for gambling disorders?

Dr Amanda Roberts, University of Lincoln, College of Social Science, School of Psychology, UoL CoSS research

Gambling was reclassified from an impulse control disorder to a behavioural addiction in the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, 5th edn).1 Conservative estimates indicate that approximately 1% of the UK population exhibit gambling behaviour that warrants a diagnosis of ‘disordered gambling’,2 where disordered gambling refers to the useful term proposed in the DSM-52 re-classification encompassing ‘problem’, ‘pathological’, and ‘compulsive’ gambling.1 The negative effects of disordered gambling can include mental health problems, financial crises, relationship breakdown, domestic violence, and self-harm or suicide, and tend to cluster with other high-risk behaviours such as smoking and drug taking.

University of Lincoln, College of Social science Research

Dr Amanda Roberts, University of Lincoln, School of Psychology

Henrietta Bowden-Jones, National Problem Gambling Clinic, London and Imperial College London

David Roberts, Market Square Surgery, Waltham Abbey

Stephen Sharman, University of East London