Gambling addiction can adversely affect and be problematic for all areas of life. Starting with the obvious monetary implications of problem gambling, an addiction like this can quickly disturb many facets of day-to-day activities. A compulsive disorder, gambling addiction can manifest itself at any age and in any income bracket. It is characterized by an all-consuming desire to chase losses. Negative consequences provide no deterrent, and the need to continue is all too powerful. If any of these behaviors seem familiar, gambling addiction hotlines are available for help.
Did You Know?
“Pathological gambling” wasn’t recognized officially as a clinical disorder until 1980, from then on it was included in the DSM-III.
Compulsive gambling can take many forms — from lottery tickets and the craps table, slots, blackjack or horse racing all the way to illegal cock fighting. The attraction and thrill that gambling provides makes it difficult, if not impossible, for the person with an untreated gambling problem to stay away. The escalation of the of this behavioral addiction can happen quickly, and it can reach the point of using funds destined for housing, children or even food.
Did You Know?
It is estimated that as many as 2 million Americans, or 1 percent of the population, are pathological gamblers. An additional 2 to 3 percent, or 4 to 6 million people, could be considered problem gamblers, which are people with gambling affecting their everyday lives, according to the National Council on Problem Gambling.
Defining Gambling Addiction
The act of gambling itself doesn’t necessarily have to happen daily or even weekly; it’s the gambler not being able to control the need, and the need to gamble consuming vital parts of the addict’s life that make it problematic. Friendships and relationships deteriorate as a result of the addiction and isolate the addict. The use of gambling addiction hotlines is an excellent first step in getting help. If you are looking to ease the transition back into a healthy, sober lifestyle, we can help. Call 1-888-287-0471 to discuss gambling addiction treatment options.
Do you know someone who gambles when they are under stress? When they are lonely? When they experience fear or anxiety? These are considered triggers and drive a compulsive gambler to lose themselves in the game instead of facing these uncomfortable emotions.
Did You Know?
No official product safety standards or regulations exist for online casinos, and any gambler who wants to try their luck with them does it at their own risk.
Signs of Gambling Addiction
There are many signs to pay attention to when trying to identify a gambling problem. Some of them are:
- Hiding the gambling behavior
- Lying about gambling
- Not being able to control the behavior
- Gambling even though there is no money to support the habit
- Family, friends or coworkers being concerned about it
- Being unable to pay debts or bills due to having gambled away the money
- Insisting constantly on “one more game” to recoup the losses
Did You Know?
Men have a higher tendency to exhibit signs of pathological gambling in their early teens. For women, it begins a little later, between the ages of 20 and 40 years old. Yet, according to Medline Plus, compulsive gambling can affect anyone, anywhere.
Dangers of the Addiction
Suicide is a very common issue linked to compulsive gambling. Gambling addiction helplines and hotlines should be used whenever a feeling of desperation is felt. Gamblers Anonymous, with meetings throughout the United States, was started in January of 1957 by two men with a history of desolation due to their compulsive gambling. These two men outlined a program of character and behavioral changes they judged necessary to prevent relapse and that program is still in use today. The program is based on spiritual principles that were already in use to beat other compulsive behaviors. The first group meeting was held in September of the same year in Los Angeles, and they have continued to be held ever since. The organization offers a classic 12-step program towards recovery. Meetings for specific areas can be found through their website at http://www.gamblersanonymous.org or through their toll-free gambling addiction hotline on 1-888-GA-HELPS.
Did You Know?
In 2010 to 2011, callers to the Florida Council for Compulsive Gambling who claimed to have suicidal inclinations or attempts rose from 11 to 16 percent over the previous year.
Get Help by Calling a Gambling Addiction Hotline Today
Although some can enjoy gambling in small, controlled quantities, like anything, too much of it can be destructive and endanger one’s family, health and general well-being. Feeling out of control and at the mercy of a compulsion isn’t a healthy or enjoyable way to live. Luckily, there are solutions and help in every corner of the country available to anyone who might need it. To learn more about gambling addiction effects, treatment and possible behavioral addiction rehab program options, call our helpline today.
There are many programs available throughout the country to treat and prevent recurrences of the addiction. If you’d like help finding the right treatment program for you, call us on our gambling addiction hotline at 1-888-287-0471. We are here 24/7 to take your call.