Are you a victim of problem gambling? If so, this article will walk you through the Symptoms and Treatment options of this condition. Often, people do not recognize that they have a problem until they have lost their control of their impulses. If you are concerned that you have a gambling addiction, please contact a professional for help. The sooner you seek help, the better your chances will be of recovery. Fortunately, there are many ways to find help and stop problem gambling for good.
The treatments for problem gambling vary. Most involve counseling, step-based programs, self-help, peer support, and medications. There is no single treatment that is considered most effective for problem gambling. Medication for pathological gambling is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but it can help treat the underlying condition. Some treatments can be combined to provide the best results. If you or a loved one is experiencing compulsive gambling, consider visiting your doctor and seeking treatment.
The definition of problem gambling has changed over time, resulting in a wide variety of terms. Among the most common terms used today are “at-risk”, “compulsive,” and ‘gambling addiction.’ While these terms have remained relatively consistent, the criteria have changed slightly. In general, “problem” gambling refers to the negative consequences of gambling, without meeting the criteria for pathological gambling. It is a disorder that can affect the physical and mental health of the person involved.
Some signs of gambling addiction include impulsiveness, irritability, and changes in mental health. An addict may become agitated and anxious, and even have trouble sleeping. A gambling problem can lead to depression and anxiety. While the addiction itself is a completely different disease than drug addiction, symptoms are very similar. Gamblers can show signs of addiction in groups and when a group leader campaigned for the activity. It’s important to watch for these symptoms and to make sure you’re dealing with a gambling problem.
A pathological gambler may use gambling to escape from the world and combat negative emotions. People who are addicted to gambling may become “chasers” of losses, trying to recoup their losses repeatedly. Losses often result in an increase in suicidal attempts, and a gambler may even lie to friends and family to conceal their problem. The effects of gambling can be devastating for a person’s self-esteem.
If you are concerned about your loved one’s gambling addiction, there are a few signs you should be aware of. The first of these is the constant thoughts about gambling. You may also find yourself getting irritated and cranky when you can’t bet or win money. You might also start to lose control of your work or school life and even turn to stealing to fund your addiction. If you are noticing these signs, you may have a gambling problem.
If you or a loved one is having trouble controlling their gambling habits, it’s important to seek professional help. The symptoms of compulsive gambling can be based on biological, environmental, or both. Gamblers with this condition often struggle with depression, anxiety, and substance abuse problems. Some even suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder and bipolar disorder. Gambling can begin as early as adolescence and can continue into adulthood.
A randomized controlled trial by Nancy Petry and colleagues examined the effectiveness of three brief interventions for substance use disorder patients who also had gambling problems. The researchers compared the effectiveness of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Motivational Enhancement Therapy. Although each intervention was effective, its relative contribution to improving gambling outcomes remained unclear. Moreover, participants in the CBT and MET groups were equally likely to show improvement in their gambling behaviors. Thus, the effectiveness of these treatments should be evaluated to determine their relative contributions to the overall improvement of gambling problems.
The first step in seeking treatment for gambling addiction is admitting that you have a problem and are determined to change your behavior. Gambling addiction can destroy relationships and can cause considerable financial hardship. In order to find treatment, you must be willing to accept the pain caused by the gambling problem, as well as the depleted savings and finances. Moreover, you should admit that you have taken advantage of others or committed fraud or theft, and accept the anger and shame that come with these actions.