Gambling Addiction


Gambling is an activity in which people risk something of value by placing a wager on an uncertain event. There are many factors to consider before engaging in gambling, including the prize and risk involved. It is important to remember that gambling is a form of impulse control disorder. However, it is treatable. The first step in treatment is to determine the specifics of the person’s gambling habit.

Problem gambling is an impulse-control disorder

Problem gambling is a condition in which a person has difficulty regulating their impulses and spending. Various treatments are available for problem gamblers. These include counseling, step-based programs, self-help, and peer support. In addition, medications may also be prescribed. However, there is no one treatment that is considered the most effective for treating pathological gambling.

The inclusion of pathological gambling into the DSM-III was a watershed event for the field of gambling studies. This recognition is credited in part to the advocacy of Robert Custer. In his book, the author consulted with key players in the gambling field and the American Psychiatric Association to develop a definition of pathological gambling.

It is a mental health problem

If you feel like your gambling is out of control, it’s time to seek professional help. The problem can affect your finances, health, and even relationships. The Toronto Centre for Addiction and Mental Health offers several resources to help you get help. These include a self-help guide, counseling, and a support group. The helpline is available twenty-four hours a day.

A gambling problem can be triggered by a mood disorder. If someone is already suffering from depression or anxiety, compulsive gambling may make their depression worse. However, once the problem is diagnosed, the patient can pursue treatment.

It is associated with nongambling health problems

Gambling is a common recreational activity, but there are also health risks associated with problem and pathological gambling. Both of these disorders involve excessive betting and gambling, which can lead to social, physical, and psychological harms. Pathological gambling is also associated with suicidal ideation and attempts. These symptoms may also accompany other problems, such as substance abuse and depression.

Problem gambling is associated with childhood maltreatment. This can include physical abuse or neglect by a parent or caregiver. Children who are physically abused or neglected can experience serious mental and physical health consequences. Childhood neglect has also been linked with gambling problems in adults.

It is treatable

Gambling addiction is a serious condition and can be treated through a combination of therapy, recovery resources, and supportive psychosocial services. Gambling treatment programs can include both inpatient and outpatient treatment options. During treatment, the individual is evaluated to determine the best level of care and recovery resources. Behavioral treatments can address the underlying causes of gambling addiction, as well as addressing co-occurring mental and physical health problems.

Therapy can help you identify internal patterns that trigger your problem gambling, and help you develop new coping strategies. Mindfulness-based therapy can teach you how to recognize triggers and develop coping skills. Medication may also be an option, although more research is needed before it can be considered a treatment for addiction. If you suspect you have a gambling disorder, it is important to seek treatment as early detection may help prevent compulsive gambling from getting worse.