Recognising the Warning Signs of Gambling Addiction

Gambling is an activity where people place a bet or stake on something with the aim of winning money or other valuable prizes. It can take many forms, from betting on football games or other sporting events to playing casino games and lottery games. Many people find gambling to be an exciting and fun activity, but for some it can be a serious problem that causes problems in their personal and professional lives.

Problem gamblers can be found in every demographic, from rich to poor, young to old, male or female. They can be of any race, religion or education level, and may live in small towns or big cities. It is important to recognise the warning signs of gambling addiction, and if you feel that you have a problem it is vital to seek help.

The most common sign of a gambling problem is secretive behavior. You may lie to friends and family about how much you are spending on gambling, or you might hide your gambling activities altogether. You may also increase your bets to try and win back the money you have lost. This can have a devastating effect on families and friends who may be left struggling to cope with the financial stress and emotional damage caused by an addiction to gambling.

A person who is addicted to gambling may experience feelings of euphoria when they are gambling, and may even feel high after they win a game or make a bet. This is because of a chemical change in the brain that occurs when you gamble. This is similar to the way that alcohol or other drugs can affect your body and mind. As a result, people with gambling addictions often feel they cannot control their behavior and find it difficult to stop.

If you are worried about your own gambling habits or those of someone close to you, there are a number of organisations that can offer support, assistance and counselling. They can help you to regain control of your gambling and learn how to manage it better in the future.

There are a range of treatment options for gambling addiction, including individual and group therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), medication and relapse prevention. These can be delivered in a hospital, community clinic or through a residential rehab program. A therapist can work with you to address issues such as depression, anxiety and relationships, and help you to develop skills to overcome your addiction to gambling.

In the past, the psychiatric community generally regarded pathological gambling as more of a compulsion than an addiction. But this year, the American Psychiatric Association moved pathological gambling into the section on addictive disorders of its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), alongside kleptomania, pyromania and trichotillomania (hair-pulling). It is believed that the decision was influenced by new research showing that the brain circuits that are affected in these disorders are very similar to those involved in drug addiction.

Recognising the Warning Signs of Gambling Addiction
Scroll to top