A problem gambler needs to keep playing in order to obtain the same high as when they were first addicted to gambling. This means they must continually bet more money to meet their gambling addiction needs. This can lead to a vicious cycle where increased cravings for gambling leads to decreased resistance to the urge to gamble and ultimately to loss. Gambling addiction is a serious problem that has numerous physical, social, and professional implications. To learn more about gambling addiction, read on.
There are several ways to treat problem gambling, and most treatments focus on counseling, step-based programs, self-help, peer-support, and medication. Unfortunately, there is no single treatment that has proven to be the most effective. There are, however, several medications that have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for pathological gambling. The best option for your loved one is to visit a professional and seek treatment if you are concerned about your gambling problem.
While gambling can be defined as a game of chance and skill, the underlying problem is always the same: placing an item of value at risk in hopes of gaining greater value. People with problem gambling are often considered to be at increased risk than the general population, including adolescent and older adults, veterans, and Latino and Asian communities. Even if a person has no family history of problem gambling, they still may have friends and relatives who suffer from it.
Signs of problem gambling
The symptoms of problem gambling are many, and range from no gambling to excessive losses. Gambling can cause major problems to a person, their family, and friends. Depending on the type of gambling addiction, problem gambling may affect one or all of these groups. Some signs are excessive mood swings, lying about gambling, and borrowing money to fund the behavior. However, the signs of problem gambling should not be ignored if you suspect that your friend or family member is experiencing the early signs of a gambling addiction.
Another sign is if you are always late, spending money without being paid, or lying about where you’re going. Often, a person with a gambling addiction will lie about where they are, or they will steal money. You may notice other signs of problem gambling, such as lying about where you’re going, manipulating others, or even being unable to sleep at night. You’ll likely notice these behaviors if you think it’s time to seek help.
Treatment options for problem gambling
Treatment options for problem gambling can range from inpatient and outpatient programs to self-help groups and rehabilitation facilities. For individuals who cannot take off a month from their jobs, outpatient treatment is a great option. Individuals attending outpatient programs can attend group sessions, counseling, or participate in activities such as yoga, music therapy, or art therapy. Treatment options for problem gambling may include behavioural modification programs, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), which aim to change the person’s compulsive thoughts about gambling.
Regardless of the causes of problem gambling, the first step toward recovery is taking action. Getting help and making the decision to change behavior are the most difficult steps. Many people suffering from addiction struggle with denial. They try to minimize the problem, minimizing its negative effects, or creating excuses to continue their behavior. This pattern of thinking leads to more destructive outcomes over time. For these reasons, it is important to recognize that treatment options for problem gambling can help you achieve the long-term recovery you’re looking for.