The case for using personally relevant and emotionally stimulating gambling messages as a gambling harm-minimisation strategy

Andrew Harris, Adrian Parke, Mark D. Griffiths

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Emotions typically exert powerful, enduring, and often predictable influences over decision-making. However, emotion-based decision-making is seen as a mediator of impulsive and reckless gambling behaviour, where emotion may be seen as the antithesis of controlled and rational decision-making, a proposition supported by recent neuroimaging evidence. The present paper argues that the same emotional mechanisms can be used to influence a gambler to cease gambling, by focusing their emotional decision-making on positive external and personally relevant factors, such as familial impact or longer term financial factors. Emotionally stimulating messages may also have the advantage of capturing attention above and beyond traditionally responsible gambling messaging. This is important given the highly emotionally aroused states often experienced by both gamblers and problem gamblers, where attentional activation thresholds for external stimuli such as messages may be increased.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)266-275
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Mental Health and Addiction
Issue number2
Early online date6 Sep 2016
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 6 Sep 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Decision-making
  • Emotion
  • Harm-minimisation
  • Pop-up messages
  • Responsible gambling

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