Gambling Addiction and Recovery
Gambling addiction is a complex issue and often goes unrecognised. However, if you or someone you know is experiencing problems, there are therapists who specialise in gambling addiction and recovery.
People with a gambling problem often experience negative feelings like depression or stress, which can trigger compulsive behaviour and urges to gamble. Effective coping mechanisms include attending therapy and talking about emotions with family and friends. You can also use exercise, yoga and meditation to increase positivity, reduce cravings and change maladaptive coping strategies. Other coping techniques include writing daily gratitude lists and setting goals to boost self-esteem, encourage positive thinking and combat urges to gamble.
Pathological gambling is a mental health condition that can have significant consequences for a person’s finances, relationships and work. It can cause financial ruin, a loss of assets, and lead to debt problems. Some people also develop substance abuse issues. It’s important to recognise a gambling problem and get help before it escalates.
If you’re concerned about a loved one’s gambling behaviour, talk to them and find out what steps they are taking to deal with the issue. You might need to intervene by limiting credit card spending, agreeing on joint debt repayment plans, or taking control of household money.
A gambling problem can also result from underlying mental health conditions, such as bipolar disorder, and it’s important to address the underlying issue to stop the gambling behaviour. It’s also advisable to seek help from support groups and other services.