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US multinational buys into UK rehab centres as demand grows | Society | The Guardian
The UK private rehab market is set to grow exponentially, one of the largest addiction firms in the country has said after receiving US investment.

Addiction treatment centres have reported increases in the number of people seeking help, and concerns have been raised that cuts to drug and alcohol services mean some addicts are being cut adrift.
NHS  Privatisation  addiction  Austerity  self-medication  UK 
2 days ago by asterisk2a
Inside David Foster Wallace's Private Self-Help Library - The Awl
Description of David Foster Wallace's self-help library and the themes of addiction and mental health through his work.
self-improvement  writing  addiction  depression 
3 days ago by dehowell
The Candy Crush Sweet Tooth: How ‘Near-misses’ in Candy Crush Increase Frustration, and the Urge to Continue Gameplay | SpringerLink
"Because near-misses in gambling games have consistently been shown to invigorate play despite being frustrating outcomes, the goal of the present study was to examine whether such near-misses trigger increases in player arousal, frustration and urge to continue play in Candy Crush. ... Near-misses were more arousing than losses as indexed by increased heart rate and greater subjective arousal. Near-misses were also subjectively rated as the most frustrating of all outcomes. Most importantly, of any type of outcome, near-misses triggered the most substantial urge to continue play. These findings suggest that near-misses in Candy Crush play a role in player commitment to the game, and may contribute to players playing longer than intended."
addiction  games 
4 days ago by katherinestevens
How gambling distorts reality and hooks your brain
"Studies have shown that the release of dopamine during gambling occurs in brain areas similar to those activated by taking drugs of abuse. In fact, similar to drugs, repeated exposure to gambling and uncertainty produces lasting changes in the human brain. These reward pathways, similar to those seen in individuals suffering from drug addiction, become hypersensitive. Animal studies suggest that these brain changes due to uncertainty can even enhance gamblers’ cravings and desire for addictive drugs.

"Repeated exposure to gambling and uncertainty can even change how you respond to losing. Counterintuitively, in individuals with a gambling problem, losing money comes to trigger the rewarding release of dopamine almost to the same degree that winning does. As a result, in problem gamblers, losing sets off the urge to keep playing, rather than the disappointment that might prompt you to walk away, a phenomenon known as chasing losses. ...

"But gambling is more than just winning and losing. It can be a whole immersive environment with an array of flashing lights and sounds. This is particularly true in a busy casino, but even a game or gambling app on a smartphone includes plenty of audio and visual frills to capture your attention.

"But are they just frills? Studies suggest that these lights and sounds become more attractive and capable of triggering urges to play when they are paired with reward uncertainty. In particular, win-associated cues–such as jingles that vary in length and size as a function of jackpot size–both increase excitement and lead gamblers to overestimate how often they are winning. Crucially, they can also keep you gambling longer and encourage you to play faster. ...

"Having multiple lines enables players to place a bunch of bets per spin, often up to 20 or more. Although each individual bet can be small, many players place the maximum number of bets on each spin. This strategy means a player can win on some lines while losing on others, netting less than the original wager. ...

"The result is that these multi-line slot machines produce more enjoyment and are highly preferred by players. Crucially, they tend to make gamblers overestimate how often they’re truly winning. The dramatic increase in the frequency of wins, whether real or fabricated, produces more arousal and activation of reward pathways in the brain, possibly accelerating the rate at which brain changes occur. Multi-line slots also seem to promote the development of 'dark flow,' a trance-like state in which players get wholly absorbed in the game, sometimes for hours on end. ...

"Near-misses are more arousing than losses–despite being more frustrating and significantly less pleasant than missing by a longshot. But crucially, almost winning triggers a more substantial urge to play than even winning itself. Near-misses seem to be highly motivating and increase player commitment to a game, resulting in individuals playing longer than they intended. The size of the dopamine response to a near-miss in fact correlates with the severity of an individual’s gambling addiction. ...

"When you engage in recreational gambling, you are not simply playing against the odds, but also battling an enemy trained in the art of deceit and subterfuge. Games of chance have a vested interest in hooking players for longer and letting them eventually walk away with the impression they did better than chance, fostering a false impression of skill. ...

"Up to 2% of the U.S. population are problem gamblers, suffering from what’s recently been reclassified as gambling disorder.

"It stands out as one of the few addictions that doesn’t involve consumption of a substance, such as a drug. Like other forms of addiction, gambling disorder is a solitary and isolating experience. It’s tied to growing anxiety, and problem gamblers are at greater risk of suicide."
Author: Mark Robinson, Fast Company, August 14, 2018
4 days ago by katherinestevens
Popping the Bubble: Brian Solis enters his Madonna Like a Virgin phase - Brian Solis
Sandra Ponce de Leon of the Popping The Bubble blog recently interviewed Brian Solis for their podcast, where they talked at length about digital disruption, digital addiction, and the steps you can take in your life to combat it.
actions  addiction  advice  digital  disruption  interview  podcast  press  publicity  brian  solis 
5 days ago by briansolis
The tech industry’s psychological war on kids • Medium
Richard Freed is a psychologist treating children and adolescents:
<p>Nestled in an unremarkable building on the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto, California, is the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab, founded in 1998. The lab’s creator, Dr. B.J. Fogg, is a psychologist and the father of persuasive technology, a discipline in which digital machines and apps — including smartphones, social media, and video games — are configured to alter human thoughts and behaviors. As the lab’s website boldly proclaims: “Machines designed to change humans.”

Fogg speaks openly of the ability to use smartphones and other digital devices to change our ideas and actions: “We can now create machines that can change what people think and what people do, and the machines can do that autonomously.” Called “the millionaire maker,” Fogg has groomed former students who have used his methods to develop technologies that now consume kids’ lives. As he recently touted on his personal website, “My students often do groundbreaking projects, and they continue having impact in the real world after they leave Stanford… For example, Instagram has influenced the behavior of over 800 million people. The co-founder was a student of mine.”

Intriguingly, there are signs that Fogg is feeling the heat from recent scrutiny of the use of digital devices to alter behavior. His boast about Instagram, which was present on his website as late as January of 2018, has been removed. Fogg’s website also has lately undergone a substantial makeover, as he now seems to go out of his way to suggest his work has benevolent aims…</p>

This is a long piece, but full of remarkable insights into what's happening with children.
technology  addiction  psychology  children 
5 days ago by charlesarthur
these things take time
He’s always wary of making assumptions; even more so when Grantaire is concerned. He knows he’s not the easiest person to deal with. People either like him or can’t stand him, and it’s easy to respond to those reactions, but Grantaire—Grantaire is hostile and mocking, Grantaire scorns his beliefs, and Grantaire stays.
exr  modernau  au  chaptered  slowburn  addiction  mentalhealth 
6 days ago by misandrywitch
Step Four
Being a casual drug user's best friend is the opposite of going to meetings.
jackxshitty  checkplease  mentalhealth  addiction  friendship 
6 days ago by misandrywitch
RT : Why call this ? "Young women appear to be more addicted to their smartphones than young men, with texting…
addiction  from twitter_favs
6 days ago by Surliminal

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