The hidden dangers of compulsive gambling

The hidden dangers of compulsive gambling-1

Table of Contents

Although considered a relatively meek addiction, gambling addiction is capable of causing much harm in one’s life. Gambling problem statistics indicate that this addiction has grown at alarming scales. Millions of people worldwide struggle with offline and online gambling addiction currently.

 

It is estimated that nearly five persons out of every hundred globally suffer from compulsive gambling behavior. These people are unable to stop gambling at a healthy level.

 

Being a problem gambler presents itself with countless adverse effects. Gambling may feel like just a time pass. But it can make or break one’s life and career.

 

People with a gambling disorder engage in constant bets at casinos and spend hefty sums of money. The National Council on Problem Gambling observes that a large portion of gambling addicts end up financially broken. Gambling studies point out that people who gamble regularly are most likely to seek help from their friends and family to continue their gambling behavior.

 

As per the reputed Diagnostic and Statistical Manual on Mental Disorders, addictions are reversible. So, it is possible to take control of an addict’s life back with proper treatment options. If not, it can be nearly impossible to save a person with an addiction from gambling participation.

 

Problem Gambling & Compulsive Gambling Addiction: Dangers of Gambling Disorder

People with a gambling problem gradually lose control over their brains. They get addicted to gambling and turn out to be compulsive gamblers. Problem gambling among young people and adults can bring much harm.

 

People with gambling disorder experience physical, mental, emotional, and social adversities. People with a gambling addiction can gradually be a menace to the society. There are even incidents of people who keep gambling and engaging in illegal ways and acts.

 

People who gamble compulsively need to understand the issues they will face anytime soon. There is much more to gambling addiction than mere financial losses. The hidden dangers of casino gambling issues are discussed in detail below.

 

Gambling Addiction: Signs and Symptoms

Gambling can become highly addictive. It may not take much time to develop a gambling problem. However, it can take a good deal of time to recover from severe gambling issues.

 

According to health professionals, several common symptoms and signs support to help identify a loved one’s gambling addiction. Here are some of the most common symptoms exhibited by a gambling addict.

  • Social isolation
  • Uncontrollable urge to participate in gambling
  • General loss of interest in day-to-day activities
  • Lack of concentration
  • Problems at the workplace
  • Problems with personal relations
  • Lying, stealing, etc.
  • Behavioral problems
  • Constant denial
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • Stress-related issues
The hidden dangers of compulsive gambling
Gambling Problem: Hidden Dangers

Money gambling can be an extremely dangerous pass time. It can affect the basic physical health of the gambler and the financial stability of them. People preoccupied with gambling can harm their social lives, too. Along with the apparent problems that gambling activities cause, there are some hidden dangers, too. Some of them are discussed in detail below.

 

Financial Difficulties

Financial difficulties are one of the significant dangers caused by gambling online. According to statistics, more than 90% of global gamblers take cash advances from at least one of their credit cards. The inability to regain control over their expenses on gambling sites will eventually lead gamblers to a financial crisis. Piling up of debts can cause significant issues in the lives of the gamblers.

 

Loss of Career and Assets

Compulsive gambling may result in a significant change in the behavior of the gambler. They may feel restless, less focused, constantly irritated, less productive, etc. Many gamblers even exhibit symptoms of anxiety. Such mental health issues often associated with gambling addiction may not be encouraged in a professional setup.

 

A large number of problem gamblers end up losing their job due to various reasons. The loss of a job can effectively stop the income flow to the gambler. This will only increase debt and liabilities.

 

Strained Personal Relationships

Under gambling addiction, you start losing control of your life. And the first thing that gets affected by the addiction is the personal relationships that you have. The more time you spend on gambling, the less time will be spent with your loved ones.

Gambling affects family, partners, and friends. Financial strains and emotional instability can significantly change the dynamics of personal relations. Relationship breakdowns are widespread among gambling addicts. The economic impact study of gambling in Tasmania points out that the friends and family of a person with an addiction are also forced to share the financial and emotional burdens of a gambler.

 

Legal Issues

Online betting addiction, as mentioned, can lead to severe behavioral issues. This can lead the gamblers to small or substantial legal conflicts. Engaging in illegal gambling activities, theft, fraud, forgery, etc., are some of the common crimes committed by gambling addicts.

 

Gambling prevalence is undoubtedly the factor responsible for such legal issues. Until and unless the person with an addiction gets a complete recovery from gambling, the chances of legal complications remain high.

 

Isolation

Gambling causes severe social isolation or loneliness for people. Online gambling or sports betting at various gambling venues online causes the gambler to remain indoors. They tend to engage in gambling despite any personal or professional commitments. This will gradually lead them to social isolation.

 

As problem gamblers tend to shy away from social gatherings, people will start ignoring them, which will essentially cause complete social isolation.

 

Problem Gambler: Help Someone Via Recovery Options

There is no boundary to the damage that can be caused by gambling addiction. Gambling addicts need to get peer support or professional treatment to get better. There have been incidents of gambling addicts taking suicide seriously.

 

While engaging in compulsive gambling activities, people with an addiction are willing to risk something and everything. They value the hope that they will win something someday. But it is advisable for gamblers to always watch out for warning signs from the body.

 

If you start feeling low on your health and wellbeing, you must understand that help is available. Various gambling helplines function globally. These helplines can guide you to the proper treatment of gambling. Organizations similar to Alcoholics Anonymous help people from online casino addiction and spending too much gambling money.

 

Final Word: Self-Help Groups and Other Treatment Options

Gambling harms the personal and professional lives of a gambler. In the Australian gambling industry, for example, there are many incidents of people who develop severe addictions to gambling. Gambling enthusiasts need to identify whether there are any risk factors for addiction in their lives and take necessary precautions. Also, gamblers should practice responsible gambling. Gamblers should constantly check their gambling patterns using the problem gambling severity index and make necessary adjustments.

FAQs

You can keep gambling without developing an addiction by practicing responsible gambling. According to the concept of responsible gambling, every gambler should keep a check on the time and money spent on gambling games.

Gamblers Anonymous is an initiative that guides recovering gambling addicts. It is similar to the Alcoholics Anonymous organization.

Gambling in Australia is wholly based on licensing. Only reputed casinos with proper license documents can function in Australia.

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Contributing Editor

Troy Wakelin – Co-Founder and Contributing Editor SoberCentre.com

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