Find Information On Gambling Addiction and Where to find help for Problem Gambling for yourself or a loved one. Gambling Addiction and Problem Gambling can be debilitating and hard on everyone including friends and family. Gambling can be fun when done in moderation. However once your gambling takes precedence over your Family or Work Affairs then you have a problem.
Gambling Problem? Take The Test and See:
Gambling Addiction Test:
- Do I spend more than my disposal income allows on betting
- Do I live only for the next time I can get back to gambling
- Do I miss work because of gambling
- Do I skip family functions to go to casinos and poker tournaments
- Do I feel like I need to keep playing to get even before I can leave a casino or stop an online betting session
- Do I use credit cards for funds to gamble with that I cannot pay when the bill comes due
- Am I going into debt because of gambling
- Did I or am I thinking of remortgaging the house to get more funds to gamble with or to pay gambling debts
- Do I keep my losses or my gambling trips or online gambling from my spouse or significant other
- Did I stop hanging out with or even calling my friends because I am too busy gambling
- Do I feel the need to gamble above all else
- Have I had any bad or suicidal thoughts from the weight of debt from gambling
- Can I honestly stop gambling for months at a time or do I keep playing even when its lost its fun
Online Sites for Gambling Addiction
Gambling Problem Help in Australia
Gambling Addiction Help in Canada
Gambling Problem Help in United Kingdom
Gambling Addiction Help in the United States
Help Yourself and Others with a Gambling Addiction
Gambling Problems cannot always be caught or recognized by the person who is addicted. Often times you must take cues from those around you. Maybe they are noticing something you are not. Sometimes sitting back and asking yourself if the questions above sound familiar to you and admitting that you have a problem is a good first step.
The best thing to do is call a gambling hotline or click on the links above and find help online. Just start talking to someone or reading on these sites and see what happens. Please use the numbers provided below and or websites provided above to get started now.
OPT OUT and Stop Gambling
Another Great technique to help yourself when you find you just cannot control the urge to gamble is to contact the casinos in your area and put yourself on an exclusion list with them. State you are having a problem and need to Opt Out from their casino. They will then not allow you back for periods of time. Tell them you want to opt out for 3 6 or even 12 months to get yourself back on your feet.
Perhaps you may not be addicted to gambling but know of someone who is or might be heading in that direction. Email them this link to read, and tell them your there to help and listen. Sitting back and doing nothing will not help a friend or loved one. You might as well try. Share this page or email it directly to someone you know who may need help.
Get them to Opt out of their local casino first. The next challenge is online gambling as its harder for some to opt out of. Contact the support area of the casino online and ask for exclusion. If its a reputable site then they should oblige.
Gambling Problem Hotlines
Great Britain Call Access
Speak to an Adviser on Freephone 0808 8020 133, 8 am to midnight, seven days a week.
Canadian Provinces Direct Toll Free Numbers for Addiction Help
- Alberta Alcohol and Drug Abuse
- British Columbia Problem Gambling Information Service
- Manitoba Gambling Helpline Telephone
- New Brunswick Problem Gamblers Hotline
- Newfoundland and Labrador Phone
- Nova Scotia Toll-Free Gambling Helpline Call
- Nunavut Kamatsiaqtut Helpline
- Ontario Problem Gambling Helpline
- Prince Edward Island Program
- Québec – Gambling Help and Referral
(514) 527-0140 Montreal
1-800-461-0140 and 1-866-767-5389 province wide
- Saskatchewan Problem Gambling Helpline
United States Gambling Helpline
Australia Gambling Call Helpline
1- 800- 858- 858
The Most Overlooked Addiction is Gambling
Addiction is something that we all struggle with at some point in our lives. Addictions can come in many forms. People become reliant upon all sorts of things. Lots of men and women around the world develop serious addictions to shopping, caffeine, alcohol, and cigarettes just to name a few. But there is one very common case of dependency that is oftentimes overlooked: gambling.
Gambling Problems Inflict Harm and Affects Millions Worldwide
Gambling addiction adversely affects between 4-6 million adults in the U.S. alone according to experts on the subject. These problem gamblers find it difficult (sometimes impossible) to restrain themselves. The risk vs. reward dynamic is so powerful that it calls them in like a siren, leaving them crashing into metaphorical rocks in the form of poverty, debt, and even homelessness.
They ignore the needs of their families and significant others as well as themselves. Hundreds of thousands of adults every year go to clinics to speak with professionals about their problem because it has gotten so out of hand that they can’t even go to the store to buy food without making the wrong decision. If you have never experienced this phenomenon, you are quite lucky. It can ravage anyone and destroy lives.
Poverty Debt and Homelessness: Gambling Addiction Stories
“‘I was outside on a sunny day listening to an Indians baseball game on the radio. I was ten years old. Then it all came down on us. I can still remember the shock and confusion I felt as a 10-year-old boy when my family was evicted from our home. My dad had a good job in the hospitality industry.
He made plenty of money but was addicted to state sponsored lottery games. He gambled away everything we had and lost both his job and his home. He, his wife, and his children children were all thrown out onto the street – more than once.”
This was a portion of a memoir of a man (name withheld) whose family was victim to the scourge of gambling addiction. It is a very real problem, and this shows exactly how it can affect not just the addict, but his or her friends, family, and everyday life.
What are the Causes of Gambling Addiction?
So, what causes this form of addiction? The American Psychiatric Association classifies pathological gambling under the broader category of impulse control disorders. This means that is can be linked significantly to OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder).
Gambling addicts find themselves obsessing over the thought of the reward, which allows them to overlook the risk involved. They will attempt to alleviate themselves of their stress, depression, or anxiety (depending on the case) by taking a risk with the constant reminder that ‘hey, maybe today will be the day!’
This day, for most obsessive gamblers, never comes. So, how do we know it’s an addiction? The proof is in the testimonies of problem gamblers. They describe feelings of heightened angst, irritability, restlessness, and other common and classic withdrawal symptoms.
Are We Genetically Inclined to Gamble?
Some experts claim that genetics could have something to do with gambling addiction, or at least with the broader subject of general addiction. People often find that they have “addictive personalities.” Even though this expression is often over- or misused, the problem certainly exists on a large scale. One’s family history of substance abuse, medical issues or disorders, and past trauma all have an effect on the upbringing and, obviously, their habits later in life.
Gambling is an Escape From Reality
Gambling for many people is an escape from the monotony and stress of everyday life. Especially for people stuck in the vicious perpetual cycle of poverty in the U.S., playing the lottery or other forms of gambling offer a small sliver of hope, which can be enough at least for a temporary distraction.
However, it is important to remember that this is not a healthy way to deal with problems. Therapy, exercise, meditation, and hard work offer a sense of real accomplishment and satisfaction without the risks involved. Wholesome activities may not give the same level of momentary instant gratification, but in the long run, adults who partake in these kinds of activities tend to be much happier.
Gambling Can Be Fun
Trips to Vegas, and Reno to enjoy the sights and sounds of gambling once in a while, perhaps a yearly trip can be fun, relaxing and thrilling vacation trips. You budget for the trip, spend what you can afford, and have fun doing it. If you win Great!
The Key is to Budget Yourself
Let lose and have fun. The same goes for playing online games you should budget them just like a vacation or recreational expense. Put aside a comfortable amount to spend once a week or once a month. Something you can say to yourself OK, even if I lose all of this amount I will not be in debt, can still pay my bills, and feel good about myself.
This way you know you have it right. Its an Entertainment Budget, treat it as such. You would not go to Vegas every week if you could not afford it. You would not go to the Movies 3 times a day 7 days a week if you could not afford it.
SO don’t gamble every day if you cannot afford it. Set yourself a schedule and a limit to play online. The same as you do before you go on vacation, or when you put money aside for movies you see, sports you play, and other entertainment items.
Although gambling can be a fun vacation or party activity or fun gambling online, remember if it is becoming more like an everyday nuisance, it’s time to step back and seek help if necessary. Especially if you can no longer treat it as fun and budget for it like I described.
Gambling Addiction Definition
Gambling addiction and problem gambling amounts to when a person can no longer control their impulses to place bets and gamble in casinos or online. Just like substance abuse, compulsive gambling is a disease that can destroy lives, but that can also be treated in a similar fashion.
When you start to gamble more than you can comfortably afford to lose you may have a gambling problem or an addiction to gambling. This problem has plagued lower income citizens since the invention of gambling institutions, but why? The problem is that the potential for profit is so enticing that it can warp a person’s view of risk vs. reward and encourage them to continue spending with the idea that eventually they will win big. Unfortunately, in most cases, this big win never comes.
Pathological Gambling Causes Big Debt
People go into debt due to pathological gambling at an astonishing rate. Every year, millions of adults all over the world lose control of their financial stability due to the siren call of what seems to be easy money. Sadly, there is no easy path to success, and this is an idea that needs to be conveyed more potently to the victims of the gambling industry. The stories of failure and regret are nearly infinite.
“The addiction to gambling is different in that it’s purely a behavior. It’s not an addiction to a chemical or substance, but it involves a similar process, in that it’s a compulsive behavior that the person has no control over,” says Maimonides Medical Center clinical psychiatrist David Yamins. Gambling is what’s called an ‘invisible addiction’ because the tracks are harder to trace.
There is no difference in smell or appearance from a problem gambler, the issue manifests itself in the form of debt and, usually, a constant state of anxiety. “I’m gonna tell you that I’m recovered 31 years, and you don’t know I just didn’t come from buying 1,000 lottery tickets or calling my bookmaker before you walked in here, or I just didn’t get back from Atlantic City an hour ago,” says ex-gambling addict Arnie Wexler Certified Compulsive Gambling Councillor.
His description is quite poignant as it truly expresses the dilemma faced by gamblers, as well as their families. There is no telltale sign of this problem, and there is no simple way to cure it besides quitting cold-turkey.
Gambling Addiction and Problem Gambling is a Disease
There is a misconception that gambling addicts simply lack self control or are unintelligent. It is very easy to look at the issue directly on the surface and to miss the crucial information that lies beneath. There is far more to this disorder than meets the eye.
One intriguing fact is that many compulsive gamblers respond well to antidepressants. This is because, according to a variety of clinical studies, problem gamblers often suffer from common mental disorders such as ADHD, obsessive-compulsive disorder, or bipolar disorder just to name a few.
These problems bring on a warped view of reality and make it impossible to ignore the constant desire for free money. Another treatment that has been tried is short term rehabilitation, but experts say that this does not do the trick. A longer stay in a rehab clinic can be successful, but rarely gets to the root of the problem.
Addicts are usually under a great deal of stress, be it at home, at work, or from some other unseen factor. To cure the addiction, you must attack the issue at its core and improve your own circumstances so that you won’t need the quick thrill of risk to get your necessary dopamine.
Gambling Addiction Symptoms and Signs
The signs of gambling addiction are prevalent and, while difficult to spot at first, can amass to a grand climax of disaster if they go unnoticed. Common signs include stress, a need for excitement, nervous ticks, and of course, frequent gambling. The biggest consequence that comes is financial instability.
Addicts often liquidate finances just to fuel the problem, praying that they will hit a jackpot. In the mind of a gambler, winning is the only way out. When you have a gambling problem you might neglect your work, be absent from work, or maybe even do the opposite and be working yourself to death just to make extra cash so you can place more bets or head out on another gambling vacation.
This behavior is self-destructive and thoughtless; millions of families all over the globe have been victims. Do not be one of them.
Gambling addiction conclusion…. How you can help
Remember, you hold the power over your life, and a piece of paper betting slip, slot machine, or your local casino tables should not be the thing to take that from you. Seek Help Now.
Lets all help ourselves and each other as Gambling Problems affect not only those who are gambling but the ones around them.
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