Gambling addiction – Symptoms, Consequences and Treatment

Convulsive gambling is a disease that can be seen in certain individuals and specific conditions. It can be seen in situations where the individual can think of nothing other than gambling. This way, the individual withdraws from their healthy lifestyle, becomes a somewhat reserved person who has only one goal. According to researchers, such a condition is a pathological disease that develops on a psychological basis and can lead to very serious, negative consequences. As a consequence, it can be seen with many different types of gambling games. Roulette bets, various poker games and other casino games can also lead to compulsive need to bet. Betting on different sports such as football, basketball, horse racing also. All of the games mentioned above are available online, and nowadays almost anyone can try them out. So a problem is seen in individuals who bet their money on a particular type of gambling game and continue betting without thinking of anything else. This way the issue develops and the psyche of the given individual as well as that individual become more and more dependent.

What are the symptoms?

symptoms of gambling addiction Gambling compulsion, as well as other deviations, have its symptoms which are the clearest signs of the existence of such a dependency. Let us mention the most obvious symptoms:
  • Desire for betting – this symptom is obvious in people because all they can think about is betting.
  • Uncontrollable behaviour – with this symptom, you can see a lack of control which can lead to non-stop betting mainly caused by consecutive losses.
  • The “chase” phenomenon – this is a definition for the desire to restore one’s accumulated losses. With this symptom, the individual bets more and more money to restore their losses but in reality the individual engages in a non-stop merry-go-round where the losses get bigger and bigger.
  • Taking out a loan for betting – if a given individual takes out a loan to start betting and doubles the money then it is very likely that compulsion is pushing the individual to such actions.
  • Borrowing money – this symptom is similar to, but here the people begin borrowing money from friends and family with one goal in mind – to bet.
  • Lies and deceit – these symptoms appear when an individual wants to continue betting while hiding the truth about lost funds and the duration of gambling games they play. Also, deceit can be seen when one’s goal is to acquire money to use for gambling.

These are the clearest and most easy-to-see symptoms which a given individual exhibits when under the influence of gambling compulsion. Remember that close friends and family are the immediate safety nets for an individual.


Which people are prone to such problems?

It’s hard to say exactly which people are prone because gambling, as an activity, is allowed in many countries in the world and is available for those who are of legal age. That’s why it can’t be said that all who bet or gamble in any way are susceptible to gambling. Betting and gambling, as a whole, should be for fun and pleasure and they should not lead to a serious problem. Some people rarely bet with this goal in mind – to have fun. With such people, the danger of gambling becoming an issue is far too small. There are also people who bet every day but are also not affected because they gamble responsibly and only as much as they can stand to lose; in other words, they control their bets.

When bets control the person, that’s when we can say it’s a problem. It doesn’t matter how old you are or what sex you are, such a condition can occur in men and women of all ages and one of the leading causes of this is depression. This is the type of depression that pushes the addicted individual to bet on deviating and forgetting for a moment that is making them depressed, but in reality, gambling turns into that person’s way of life and begins to interfere with his/her usual way of life.

Also, scientists have proven multiple times that many people who have had problems with depression in their early years eventually become troubled, with gambling, drugs, alcohol or something else. Another fact which is not to be overlooked is that if there is an addicted individual in the family, then it is very likely that later generations will be prone to gambling or some other compulsive behavior. This is because a child or teenager feels neglected and that pushes them to look for a way to let steam off. Some people live to gamble, betting for hours and years on end.


Consequences

consequences of a gambling addiction

A gambling problem can lead to a ton of terrible consequences for the addicted individual. Let us mention the most popular ones which can be seen:

  • Limiting of social contacts – this appears when an individual slowly loses interest in their friends and real life. The individual starts existing in their own world when he/she believes they are in control when in reality they are the one being control since their only thought is gambling.
  • Family problems – this is a very distinctive issue with those who are prone to gambling, and it is associated with numerous money problems and fights started by the individual so he/she can extricate money from family or sell something of value so as to have money to gamble. Another consequence can be divorce or destruction of family values due to a continuous need to gamble.
  • Thefts – another consequence which can be caused by a problem with gambling. At first, the individual starts stealing from those closest to him and then moves on to strangers.
  • Crimes – stealing from strangers is crime enough but the individual can begin using force or other such methods to steal money or valuable items which to sell and use for gambling.
  • Physical consequences – this can lead to numerous health problems such as migraines and heart attacks.
  • Bankruptcy – at one point gambling leads to a bankruptcy because the addicted spends all of his/her money, then money from the family and at the end, one he/she has sold all possessions of value in order to have money to gamble, he/she loses them as well. And that’s how such a problem leads to a full-on bankruptcy.
  • Suicide – of course, this is an incredibly unpleasant and unwanted act, but it is among the consequences of this serious condition.

Each one of these consequences is unwanted. But, with a growing gambling compulsion in a specific person, the problems and consequences with get bigger and bigger. Remember that online betting, as well as any other kind of gambling, must be for fun and one must always gamble responsibly because the consequences of an addiction to gambling games are very unpleasant and they can ruin a normal life.


How do we fight it?

The most important step on the road to recovery which must be taken by someone who has a problem is to admit to the problem. The individual must admit to himself that there is a problem and then admit it to those closest to him/her that he/she is in need of help. Always remember that your truest support and strongest foundation of recovery is family and close friends.

It’s necessary that the individual seek professional help from a psychiatrist who will guide him/her and point him/her in the right direction. Treatment for the person must include factors from the person’s normal life like getting back in touch with his/her social contacts, fit in with different groups of people, even those who are on the same boat – seeking help for gambling conditions. Very wide-spread are meetings for people with similar problems which help each other with the fight against the problem.

It is essential that an individual keep away from any type of gambling while he is in recovery and his/her will must be powerful as to lead him/her on the road to recovery and all of that combined with the faith and strength which family can provide can contribute significantly to a successful recovery.


Are there facilities that can help with gambling addictions?

Yes, in many European countries there are psychiatric clinics and facilities dedicated to helping with such conditions. At these places, you can get professional help to pull you out from the unpleasant world of compulsion.

In almost every country in Europe, there are national facilities for specific help with this issue. Aside from that, on the sites mentioned below, you will find an exclusive list of all such facilities in the United Kingdom and other European countries where treatment is offered in the form of a Therapeutic Community, which is among the main types of treatment.

The work of clinics which help with the overcome of this condition usually includes lengthy psychiatric therapies which help the individual come to terms with what he/she is actually doing and how serious it is.

The therapies last for different periods and depending on the severity of the addiction they can last as long as 2 years. In these therapies, the families of the individual play a considerable role, and there are certain visitation days so the recovering individual can receive maximum support and fight the problem.


6 pieces of advice from Betenemy.com to help you dodge the problem

Betenemy’s team is strictly against gambling addictions. With the following 6 pieces of advice, we will try to guide you in the right direction so you can dodge a gambling addiction.

  1. Do not give into your emotions
    Trust that all will be alrigh in the end
  2. Immediately seek help if necessary
    If you feel like you are having a problem or if your family members are hinting that you are going down a dangerous road, do not hesitate to seek professional help because the sooner you get treatment, the better it will be for you and your family.
  3. Do not resort to taking out loans to bet
    Do not start borrowing money to gamble. This will send you on a whirl especially if right off the bat you accumulate serious losses after which chasing after your lost money can lead to serious consequences.
  4. Put your closed ones in the first place
    Remember that in life there are much more important things than gambling such as your family and friends. Always pay more attention to them than you would to gambling because they will bring a significant moment in your life.
  5. Be social
    Always choose to be among people instead of sitting and thinking about what to bet on. Have fun and don’t think only about betting and gambling. Do not let that be a priority in your life. Let it be just for fun.
  6. Enjoy life
    Be active in your life and enjoy the beautiful moment its beings. Have fun with those closest to you and always remember which things are most valuable and are worth living your life normally.

We hope that this article we are able to help anyone who feels they are addicted to gambling and who wants to know precisely what this disease is and how to avoid it. Betenemy’s team has made sure to gather the most important information about this issue.

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