Cryptocurrency addicts seek treatment at Scottish clinic
Traders can become addicted to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin as their volatile price fluctuations can be as thrilling but potentially costly as gambling, according to therapists at Castle Craig clinic near Edinburgh. (© KAREN BLEIER / AFP)
Published Wednesday, May 30, 2018 7:37AM EDT
Traders can become addicted to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin as their volatile price fluctuations can be as thrilling but potentially costly as gambling, according to therapists at Castle Craig clinic near Edinburgh, Scotland.
Cryptocurrency addicts are offered treatments such as a 12-step program, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), trauma therapy and equine therapy.
"The high risk, fluctuating cryptocurrency market appeals to the problem gambler," said Chris Burn, a gambling therapist at Castle Craig Hospital. "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."
Castle Craig has treated over 10,000 patients for various addictions since it opened in 1988, and says the majority have gone on to achieve long-term abstinent recovery.
Prices start from £1,360 ($2,345) per week for an extended treatment program, and detox and intensive care starts from £2,975 ($5,130) per week.
A single en suite bedroom in Castle Craig's intensive treatment program costs £4,970 ($8,570) per week, and the cost of its "executive program" starts at £9,240 ($15,933) per week.
A minimum commitment of two weeks' treatment is required of all patients.
Patients or families who struggle to afford residential rehabilitation are offered advice on alternative and more affordable treatment options, and potentially external funding from Scotland's National Health Service.