Journal of gambling behavior

, Volume 2, Issue 1, pp 15–31 | Cite as

A general theory of addictions: A new theoretical model

  • Durand F. Jacobs


A general theory of addictions is proposed, using the compulsive gambler as the prototype. Addiction is defined as a dependent state acquired over time to relieve stress. Two interrelated sets of factors predispose persons to addictions: an abnormal physiological resting state, and childhood experiences producing a deep sense of inadequacy. All addictions are hypothesized to follow a similar three-stage course. A matrix strategy is outlined to collect similar information from different kinds of addicts and normals. The ultimate objective is to identify high risk youth and prevent the development of addictions.


High Risk Theoretical Model General Theory Dependent State Childhood Experience 
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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Durand F. Jacobs
    • 2
    • 1
  1. 1.Psychology ServiceJerry L. Pettis Memorial Veterans HospitalUSA
  2. 2.Loma Linda University Medical SchoolLoma Linda

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