Problem gambling can have both financial and emotional consequences, and it can lead to serious financial problems if a person cannot stop. Once a person can’t stop, it becomes an addiction and starts to negatively affect all aspects of their lives. Treatment options for this problem include therapy and behavior changes to reduce the urge to gamble. Cognitive behavioural therapy focuses on changing how a person thinks about gambling, which can help the gambler stop the behavior completely.
The term “problem gambling” has been in use for centuries, first coined by Emil Kraepelin, who described it as a form of “gambling mania.” In 1980, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) published the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Third Edition. These criteria have changed over the past 27 years, with researchers conducting surveys of 222 compulsive gamblers and 104 substance-abusing social gamblers. The new criteria for problem gambling are based on nine symptoms.
While problem gambling can affect anyone, it is especially damaging to the health and relationships of those affected. Often, it leads to unhealthy eating habits, strained relationships, and alienation. Problem gamblers may even attempt suicide, due to the pressures of the gambling addiction. Unfortunately, the effects of problem gambling are often hidden, so the only way to recognize it and get help is to seek professional help. Fortunately, problem gambling is treatable and can help you regain control of your life.
Signs of a problem
There are some common symptoms of problem gambling. While a person may enjoy a good game of poker or spin the roulette wheel for a few hours, their enjoyment of gambling quickly turns into a serious habit. In addition to the above symptoms, a person may also feel increasingly anxious, depressed, and sleep deprived. Eventually, the behavior can even become harmful to their health. However, there are several ways to recognize signs of a gambling problem.
Financial issues are another common sign. Compulsive gamblers rely on other people’s money to fund their behavior. They often spend large amounts of money they earn to pay for gambling, which makes it difficult to manage the money that one does earn. It’s easy to imagine how stressful and debilitating financial problems can be for an addict. While these signs don’t necessarily indicate gambling addiction, they do indicate that someone is struggling with a gambling problem.
There are several types of treatment for gambling addiction. While pathological gambling is a complex disorder that has no age or wealth limits, it can have disastrous effects on a person’s life. It can prevent someone from performing their daily responsibilities and disrupt relationships with family and friends. Additionally, compulsive gambling can lead to feelings of shame, guilt, and isolation. But the good news is that treatment for gambling addiction is available. Read on to learn more about the most common types of treatment for gambling addiction.
Many people who struggle with this disorder are at risk of co-occurring mental health disorders, including substance abuse, depression, and general anxiety. This is because the brain and emotions affected by both disorders are similar, and they must be addressed simultaneously. Recovery programs should include both alcohol and drug treatment in order to prevent relapse. Additionally, treatment for gambling addiction should address the root cause of the problem. Those who are suffering from addiction should seek help immediately.