Tuesday, July 7, 2015

When Gambling Becomes A Problem

How do you know if frequent weekends in Vegas have become a gambling addiction? The signs of a gambling problem are often the same as the signs of other addictions. Common signs of a gambling addiction include: • Feeling the need to be secretive about your gambling • Having trouble controlling your gambling habits • Gambling when you cannot afford to do so • Friends and family often expressing concern with your gambling Of course, as with any other addiction, the hallmark sign of a gambling problem is that you feel you cannot stop. Gambling is a diverse activity, so it is not always obvious when someone is addicted to gambling. Contrary to popular belief, the act of gambling is not restricted to slot machines, cards and casinos. Purchasing a lottery ticket, entering a raffle or making a bet with a friend are also forms of gambling. Gambling addiction is associated with many additional challenges, in both the short- and long-term, beyond that of gambling. Consequently, a gambling addiction frequently results in other addictions that serve as coping mechanisms for people who are stressed out by the activity. Many gamblers turn to drugs, alcohol and other activities to alleviate the anxiety brought on by the gambling lifestyle. Even if a gambler never experiences financial ruin as a result of the lifestyle, they may struggle with drug and alcohol addiction for the rest of their life after self-medicating to deal with the stress.
Gambling addiction can occur when a person feels that they are in financial ruin and can only solve their problems by gambling what little they have in an attempt to win a large sum of money. Unfortunately, this almost always leads to a cycle in which the gambler feels they must win back their losses. Because gambling addiction is often associated with depression and anger, quitting gambling is no easy feat, but it can be done with the help of a solid support group and treatment program. It can be difficult to get started on the path to recovery without the assistance of professionals who have helped people through the process before. Supportive friends and family are vital to a full recovery, but they might not know how best to help you. If any of this sounds familiar, you, or someone you love, may be struggling with a gambling addiction. In California, help is available for the gambler, and the gambler’s family, with no zero out of pocket expense. For further information, please call 1-800-gambler, or visit the following website