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Posted on May 29, 2018 by staff

UK hospital launches rehab course for ‘crypto addicts’

UK hospital launches rehab course for ‘crypto addicts’

Experts say trading of virtual currencies can induce behavioural addiction
Experts say trading of virtual currencies can induce behavioural addiction

People hooked on cryptocurrency trading will now have access to a new treatment programme being pioneered by a UK hospital.

Castle Craig Hospital has created a course of residential treatment for “crypto addicts” to deal with the underlying issues and learn to live without it.

The Scottish centre already runs rehabilitation courses for people with drug, alcohol and gambling addictions, and says the new programme has been launched in response to demand.

Experts claim that the trading of virtual currencies can induce behavioural addiction in the same way that online gambling does.

Chris Burn, a gambling therapist at Castle Craig Hospital, believes there are many similarities between gambling and the cryptocurrency trading world.

“The high risk, fluctuating cryptocurrency market appeals to the problem gambler,” he said.

“It provides excitement and an escape from reality. Bitcoin, for example, has been heavily traded and huge gains and losses were made. It’s a classic bubble situation.”

Tony Marini, a former gambling and cocaine addict, will be leading some of the treatments at the centre.

He said: “Having been through it myself, my experience of addiction gives me insight and empathy towards others who have the same problem.

“I see cryptocurrency trading as a way for people to escape from themselves, into another world, because they don’t like the world they’re in.

“The first stage of treatment is to join other addicts in group therapy and share their life stories. This helps them identify with each other and realise that they’re not alone.”

I’ll be focusing on FinTech, cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology for the BusinessCloud team. Please email your thoughts and stories to  [email protected]