“Obsessed and Unable to Work”


Castle Craig rehab facility in Scotland made headlines recently for opening a new rehabilitation program to treat what therapists describe as cryptocurrency trading addiction.

The clinic recently held a Q&A on TNW answering questions on their program and the nature of the addiction itself, which is reportedly similar to online stock day-trading addiction. However, Castle Craig staff feel that the condition poses even more risks than the broader category of day-trading addiction due to the extreme volatility of the digital assets being traded and the constant access to a 24/7 market.

The staff spoke to CCN about their new program.

“Our core treatment programme is known as a twelve-step model (it follows the concepts for recovery, first formulated by Alcoholics Anonymous in the early 1940’s which have been hugely successful ever since). This is based on the idea of change based on self discovery where honesty and personal responsibility are key,” said therapist Chris Burn.

However, with behavioural addictions such as gambling, we also provide cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Daily programme includes group therapy, individual counselling, lectures and assignments, all within a therapeutic community.”

Burn went on to point out that gambling addiction is believed to produce the highest amount of suicides out of any form of addiction, and encouraged traders to remain vigilant about their own habits and those of their loved ones. Castle Craig has a questionnaire aimed at enabling traders to identify whether they might have addictive tendencies in trading cryptocurrencies.

Castle Craig’s Rupert Murray Wolfe spoke to us about the formation of the program and the typical signs of addiction.

“It all started earlier this year when we got phone enquiries from crypto-traders asking about addiction treatment. They informed us about this “new” addiction. Then we looked into it and found it was a gambling addiction with many similarities to day trading addiction.”

“We do see it getting worse and I think we’ve only just seen the start of it, the start of people facing up to perhaps being addicted to crypto trading. Denial is a huge part of any addiction.”

“When it becomes an addiction the user will not only lose money but also lose control over their life; they will become obsessed and be unable to work, have normal relationships or do anything else without constantly checking prices and news.”

The questionnaire lists the following specific factors in identifying cryptocurrency trading addiction:

  • Feeling guilt over cryptocurrency investments
  • Investing more than one can afford
  • Constantly checking crypto prices
  • Experiencing fear of missing out (FOMO)
  • Related health problems such as lack of sleep
  • Receiving criticism over excessive trading from others
  • Spending more money to recoup losses
  • Constantly needing to invest higher amounts to receive the same feeling of satisfaction
  • Borrowing money to trade
  • Experiencing financial problems due to trading

Users can answer the questionnaire and add up the results to help determine whether trading poses a genuine opportunity for financial games or a threat of gambling addiction, with more resources and case studies at the Castle Craig website for those concerned that they may have a problem with excessive or compulsive trading.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

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