Addiction Treatment

How a Gambling Addiction can Take Its Toll

Written By:

Becky Babb

How a Gambling Addiction can Take Its Toll

    A problem that is becoming a greater issue with each passing year, and is causing concern in many countries where public health situations matter, is gambling. Gambling can create problems not only in one’s social life, but can also affect their physical and psychological well-being.As the highs from wins are forgotten under stockpiling losses, stress levels skyrocket. It doesn’t take long for your mind and body to begin breaking down on you. From intestinal disorders to depression, sometimes even suicide, gambling is no laughing matter.Gambling addiction doesn’t happen overnight, it is a progressive disease. It’s also important to note that the act of gambling is not typically just a financial problem. There are often deeper, emotionally-rooted reasons why a person begins gambling in the first place.Unforeseen circumstances needing large amounts of money to address, job-related stress, or even retirement are all viable launching pads for a gambler. Established routines or familial situations could also play their part in a person’s gambling habits. It’s not uncommon for gamblers to come from homes where their own parents had drinking troubles and/or bad betting habits.Where the proclivity to roll the dice comes from doesn’t change the fact that excessive gambling can lead a person down a path into misery, discomfort, and pain. No chemical substances are actually ingested when gambling, but gambling has been compared to taking a tranquilizer, a drug, or having a drink.If you recognize any of the following signs or symptoms, then a gambling problem could be present.

    • Obsessed with gaming/gambling
    • Guilty feelings after gambling, win or lose
    • Indescribable need to place bets at a higher frequency
    • Dipping into income and savings, or borrowing money to gamble
    • You keep gambling even if losing because you just “know” you’ll make your money back with “one more bet.”
    • You’ve tried to stop gambling, but can’t
    • You’re world is falling down around you and you’re losing control, but your gambling behavior continues
    • Difficulty sleeping
    • Increased levels of depression and/or mood swings
    • Stress-related medical issues (migraines, intestinal disorders, anxiety)

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