What is Gambling Addiction?
Addiction of Gambling is categorized as a condition of mental health. It resembles other addiction and has some signs of this addiction that also similar with mental disorder relates to the behavior. It acts like a compulsive disorder.
When the addicted person is not capable enough to control the urge of his/her desire of gambling. A compulsive gambler (the addicted person) don’t care about the consequence of the gamble. The person will continue to play without noticing he/she is winning or losing. An obsessed gambler will look out for the chance of making bets and wagers irrespective of the fact that they can’t manage to lose the game. This behavior continues in spite of its negative impacts on psychological, physical, and social consequences. This condition is also known as Pathological Gambling.
When the addicted person displays compulsive gambling symptoms, but only for a specific time period or during certain hours. If a person exhibits the symptoms of binge gambling, then the person may appear in a controlled manner for most of the time. The compulsion of binge gambling only reveal when the addicted person starts betting even if its on a rare occasion.
Problem Gambling is a state in which the person is not compulsively addicted to gambling, but the habits are not totally in control. This habit disturb the pace of normal life and can be controlled with some practices that needs to be done on a regular basis. Often problem gambling starts giving the signs as chasing losses when it is not even necessary to play. They can also lying about their betting habits to their loved ones. Even, the person affected with problem gambling often realize that they cannot stay away from gambling.
What are the Signs of Gambling Addiction in Adults?
Talking about the signs of gambling addiction in adults, signs related to the disorder of compulsive gambling are diagnosed by the American Psychiatric Association. These symptoms can cause several mental disturbance and affect mental health.
Feel the need of gambling with increased amount each time you play to get the desired excitement you want.
Feeling restlessness or getting irritated if you try to stop gambling or the situation demands to do so.
Repeated unsuccessful attempt of stopping, controlling or cutting back the habit of gambling.
Thinking about gambling during most of the time of the day. Frequent thought invoke your habit (Reliving past experiences of gambling, planning to win big in the next gambling and thinking about how to beat others in gambling).
Tendency to start gambling when feel sorrow or distress. If faces loss, then prone to return to the game (loss chasing) with an aim to win bigger amount
Lying to the loved ones about the gambling activities and stealing habits to continue gamble.
Wasting time and career opportunities because of gambling and no focus. Not to care about relationship or job that is important for your life.
Depending on others for money or borrowing money from different sources for gambling.
Recognize Your Problem
It is very important that you have become aware of your problem of gambling. If you are already aware of it, then you are the first person who feel the problem. In this case, it’s better to seek help. If your family or friends have shown you the concern, it is always advisable not to ignore it. The best thing you can do is to take help from experts.
These signs are obvious for the compulsive gamblers, but in some cases it is seen that the gambling has been rationalized by the person even they cover it with other issues.
Expert psychiatric associations recommend some basic strategies or self-help steps that assist you in controlling the habit of gambling if you feel that the problem becomes prevalent.
- Reaching for support group can be the best step. You can take help of a trusted friend or attend a Gamblers Anonymous meeting.
- Keep your attention diverted to other activities, specially those that makes you happy. Hobbies will help you to get rid of distress and you will not think about gambling while doing these activities. Do not get isolated. Socialize and stay happy.
- Test your patience level with an aim to suppress the gambling urge. Try hard not to think about gambling and weaken yourself. Give yourself a longer period of break.
- Experts recommend a reality check for an addicted person. They advise you to imagine all the bad results and misery you face after you gamble. This thought helps you in staying away from gambling.
Getting treatment can be possible for a compulsive gambler. Number options of treatment are available for these people. No standard treatment is considered as the best way of treating gambling addiction. Some of the ways are discussed below:
Specific medicines for controlling gambling addictions are not available in the market. Having said that, it is also true that some medicines have shown promising result in controlling the physical reaction. This has been done due to the positive effects of medicines on mental health. Some medications help gambling addicted people to keep calm and don’t get excited while betting. Antidepressant, anti-seizure medicines are examples of this kind of medications.
Therapy and Counseling
Addictions are lethal and treating the problem is complex. In this condition, therapy and counseling become most effective way of treating gambling problems. Experts recommend this approach for its success rate in improving the behavioral problems. Counseling from trained professionals will help you to rectify your behavioral pattern. On the other hand, psychotherapy will effectively reduce the addiction and improve mental health for a better lifestyle without the gambling problems.
Group Support and Self-Help
One more important treating ways is to seek help from the Gambling Anonymous(www.gamblersanonymous.org/ga). It conjunct with psychotherapy and helps addicted people in fighting the urge of gambling, irritations and other signs. Through this method, the person becomes able to recover their difficulty or addiction by sharing their experiences, talking to others with those who have gone through the similar conditions. It helps them to get support from the group and the self help efforts are appreciated to motivate them for trying to get rid of gambling. These all are done under the professional guidance.