How to Deal With Gambling Addiction

Gambling is an activity in which people bet money on a chance to win something of value. It can be a form of entertainment, a way to socialize with others, or a method of self-soothing. However, gambling can become addictive.

If you think you have a problem with gambling, it’s important to get help as soon as possible. There are a number of different treatment options available for compulsive gambling, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a treatment option that teaches people to manage their impulses by resisting unwanted thoughts and behaviors. CBT focuses on identifying and changing false beliefs.

Problem gamblers often feel a strong urge to gamble and do not understand why they do it. They also may feel pressure to borrow or steal money to pay for gambling. This type of gambling is called compulsive gambling and may cause problems with the finances and relationships of the person who is addicted.

Gambling addiction is a serious disease. Symptoms include repeated social and financial problems, a desire to gamble even when it is not enjoyable, and a sense of shame and guilt over gambling. Attempts to quit can be unsuccessful. The problem gambler might also use savings or credit cards to pay for gambling. When the problem gambler can no longer pay, he or she can become financially unstable.

The first step is to get a diagnosis of the problem. Many mental health professionals use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) criteria to diagnose problem gambling.

The second step is to set boundaries for your gambling. You should not have a bank account where you can use your money for gambling. Also, you should not spend a large amount of money on a particular game. Your family should also be aware of your problem. Asking for assistance from a friend or a member of your family is a good way to start.

A third step is to seek professional help. Many organizations offer counselling and support for those with gambling problems. Some offer support for family members of those with gambling addiction.

Counseling can be an invaluable resource in helping a gambler to understand their gambling problems and make positive changes. Counseling can be free and confidential. People who are dealing with gambling problems should be able to access counselling on a 24/7 basis. If you are unsure about how to get started, try to find someone to talk to who has been through the process of recovering from gambling addiction.

Changing your lifestyle and learning how to cope with stress are two other ways to deal with your addiction. You can participate in educational classes or join a peer-support group. Volunteering for a worthwhile cause is a great way to learn to cope with emotions that you don’t like. Other coping strategies are to get outside and exercise, and try relaxation techniques. These methods will help you to relieve boredom and stress, and may help you to stop gambling.