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Is a female perspective really needed? Discussion is open!
Gender approach is getting more and more relevant to gain a better understanding of female specific aspects of behavioural addictions and to be more responsive to women’s health needs. Literature on Women Behavioural Addiction in specific female population is still scarce and often inferred from mostly male samples, and this bring us to question about how diagnostic criteria really fit to describe Behavioural Addiction’s harms in female population; more women are affected by pathological gambling and other non-substance related addictions, even if they rarely ask for help: so, with little specific data, it is not easy to have dedicated research and understanding of peculiarities of this invisible population, and different reach out strategies are strongly needed to fill the gap. One key point, beyond the shame issue, is that women often experience great difficulty in finding appropriate treatment services, since most health clinics rarely offer female-specific treatment approaches or harm reduction and prevention strategies. That is why it is so important to learn from our experiences as researchers and clinicians, sharing data from all over the world to enrich our understanding of these issues.