Gambling Addiction: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Causes of gambling addiction

“Addiction is a brain disease, and it matters a lot in any one life.” There are many sorts of addictions. People may get an addiction to drugs or alcohol, social media, or compulsive behaviors. For someone most troubling addiction is gambling. It is proven by new research that Gambling Addiction activates the same brain pathways as drug and alcohol cravings.

There are mainly two reasons for neuroscience research on gambling. First, gambling is a pervasive and naturalistic example of risky decision making. Second, excessive gambling involvement, which is also called Pathological Gambling, which may be a reason for addiction.

Gambling Addiction can have a destructive effect on patients, as well as their families. It may result in people losing their job, and leave families and children homeless.

Why is gambling so attractive? It is commonly believed that easy monetary gain is the main Cause of Gambling Addiction in humans. It’s very clear that gambling offers an opportunity to win more. As everyone knows, the chances of “big win” are rare but, the thought of easy earning and became million in easy terms, let people compels towards gambling. 

Reasons Why People Get Addicted to Gambling

Reasons for gambling addiction

The ethical way of making value is often time taking and a rigid process. It requires a lot of patience, which is not a human tendency, so it can also be a reason for a step into gambling.

  • It is the Psychology of Gambling in human, that gambling is an easy way to earn money because return rates are significantly large.
  • Failing to monitor wins and losses will be a reason of attraction towards gambling. The Gamblers might put more focus on the wins and forget the losses they might have suffered.
  • Personal stress is another reason to gamble, people may often turn to the gambler to seek escapism from their daily troubles. People may feel relief from the stress that tortures them, with the help of gambling.
  • Family History of Gambling Addiction will be a big reason, an experience of a family member or loved one going through gambling addiction can make individuals more susceptible to becoming addicted to gambling themselves.
  • More social, overcome shyness or isolation, maybe a Cause of Gambling Addiction.

The Different Types of Gambling Addiction

compulsive gambling

Gambling is a diverse activity, So there are some different types of gambling addiction also exist. The act of gambling addiction is not restricted to casinos, slot machines and cards. Purchasing a lottery ticket, entering a raffle or making a bet with a friend are also forms of gambling.

Have a look at some different types of gamblers which may be classified on the basis of their gambling habits.

  • Professional gamblers- They make their living by gambling and make it as their profession, thus they are considered as professional gamblers.
  • Antisocial or personality gamblers- They use gambling as a way to get money by illegal means. They are likely to be involved in fixing horse, dog races, or playing with loaded dice.
  • Casual social gamblers- They gamble for sociability, recreation, and entertainment. For them, gambling may be a form of relaxation for them.
  • Compulsive gamblers- They have lost control over their gambling habit. Compulsive gambling is a progressive Gambling Problem that harms every aspect of the gambler’s life.

Gambling Addiction Signs and Symptoms

  • Feeling secretive about gambling.
  • Having a trouble in controlling the gambling habits.
  • Gamble even, when you cannot afford.
  • Borrowing money to gamble more.
  • Always betting high.
  • Stealing or committing fraud to gamble.

Myths & Facts About Gambling Problems

Myth: One has to gamble every day to have a gambling addiction problem.
Fact: An addicted gambler may gamble frequently or infrequently. Gambling is a problem if it causes uncontrollable habits.

Myth: Gambling addiction is not a real problem if the gambler can afford the losses.
Fact: Problems caused by excessive gambling are not just financial, but also too much time spent on gambling can lead to a relationship and legal problems.

Myth: Gambling becomes a problem only when you lose every last penny.
Fact: How much money anyone can win or lose is not determinative of a gambling addiction. Gamblers may win big in a day and may lose all their earnings the next day.

Myth: Only irresponsible people get addicted to gambling.
Fact: It is common for people to believe that those suffering from addictions are responsible. But anybody can become addicted to a gambling problem, no matter how responsible he or she is.

Myth: All addicted gamblers having a criminal behavior.
Fact: While some gamblers may engage in criminal activities, such as theft or assault, but it is not the norm. It is often a feeling of loss of control which may drive a gambler to engage in such behaviors.

How To Quit Gambling Addiction

The biggest step to overcome a Problem Gambling is to realize that you have a problem. Quitting gambling is not an easy feat, but it can happen with the help of support and treatment programs. It may need tremendous strength and courage to own up to this, especially for compulsive gamblers.

Recognizing Your Gambling Problem- Admitting that you are in problem of gambling, is the first major step in dealing with it. If you know you are in some problem, you can then learn to modify your behavior to overcome from it.

Accept the consequences of your gambling problem- Gambling may cause many issues in your life like relationship problems, financial issues, legal problems, and mental health issues. It is important to accept all consequences to overcome from all these problems.

Understand the risks of gambling- It is more important to know the risks of gambling, it may help you to encourage to consider the consequences before deciding to gamble.

Get social support- Social support is an intrinsic way of recovery from gambling. Tell your family about your issues, they can help you avoid triggers to gambling.

Participate in Responsible Gambling Programs- Read about Responsible Gambling principles, it will help you to overcome from Gambling Disorder. Try to participate more and more in Responsible gambling programs.

Conclusion

Unfortunately, an estimated research says that more than 80 percent of gambling addicts never seek treatment in the first place. And of those who look for the treatment, are a return to the gaming halls back.

Motivational conversation and cognitive behavioral therapy are the two best ways of treatments for problem gamblers. Allowing the person to escape from temptation and focus on healing is more important.

You can also get help from some of the organizations dedicated to helping people with gambling addiction.

Gamblers Anonymous

Website: http://www.gamblersanonymous.org/ga/
Gamblers Anonymous are organized a 12- step program for people who want to quit gambling. They have been working, since 1957 and have successfully helped lots of people to overcome their problem of compulsive gambling.

The National Council on Problem Gambling

Website: http://www.ncpgambling.org/
Helpline Number: 800-522-4700
The National Council on Problem Gambling is an exclusive organization dedicated to supporting people suffering from gambling addiction. They offer Gambling help in the form of varieties of resources and provide valuable information which gets you in touch with expert counselors throughout the US.

Gamcare

Website: http://www.gamcare.org.uk/
Helpline Number: 0808 8020 133
GamCare offers counseling and guidance to problem gamblers. They are funded by the industry itself, so they will keep all your information confidential and are trustworthy. GamCare operates there Helpline in the UK.

For detailed information on how to stop problem gambling, you can also read a guide to Responsible Gambling .

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