The paradoxical relationship between emotion regulation and gambling-related cognitive biases
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Public Library of Science
Ruiz de Lara CM, Navas JF, Perales JC (2019) The paradoxical relationship between emotion regulation and gambling-related cognitive biases. PLoS ONE 14(8): e0220668. [https://doi. org/10.1371/journal.pone.0220668]
SponsorshipSupported by a grant from the Spanish Government (Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad, Secretaría de Estado de Investigación, Desarrollo e Innovación; Convocatoria 2017 de Proyectos I+D de Excelencia, Spain; co-funded by the Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional, FEDER, European Union), with reference number PSI2017-85488-P
Background Gambling behavior presents substantial individual variability regarding its severity, manifestations, and psychological correlates. Specifically, differences in emotion regulation, impulsivity, and cognitive distortions have been identified as crucial to describe individual profiles with implications for the prevention, prognosis, and treatment of gambling disorder (GD). Aims and method The aim of the present study was to investigate the associations of gambling-related cognitions (measured according to the GRCS model) with impulsivity (UPPS-P model) and emotion regulation (CERQ model), in a sample of 246 gamblers with different levels of gambling involvement, using mixed-effects modelling to isolate theoretically relevant associations while controlling for the potentially confounding effects of sociodemographic and clinical covariates. Results Affective/motivational dimensions of UPPS-P impulsivity positive urgency and sensation seeking, on the one hand, and CERQ emotion regulation strategies reappraisal, rumination and blaming others, on the other, independently and significantly predicted distorted gambling- related cognitions. Conclusions These results (a) reinforce the ones of previous studies stressing the relevance of emotional and motivational processes in the emergence of gambling-related cognitive distortions; and (b) replicate the seemingly paradoxical finding that gamblers use emotion regulation strategies customarily considered as adaptive (i.e. reappraisal) to strengthen and justify their biased beliefs about gambling outcomes and controllability.