Many people may not know how far gambling addiction can go, as they see gambling as a recreational activity they indulge in without having issues. The activity can be financially and intellectually rewarding sometimes. However, some people become obsessed with the financial benefits it holds and become addicted to gambling. In most cases, this addiction takes a negative effect on them and could destroy their lives
Obsessive gambling is a regular habit that develops over time, and it begins from the very first day the person places a bet. When the person wins in the first few attempts, they may consider it as an easy and fun way to multiply finance and will try again. If the winning streak continues, they may become addicted to making easy money and become obsessed with gambling. If the winning gradually stops, they still get their hopes up to win in the next attempt, which may not turn out as planned.
With all funds exhausted, an addictive gambler may begin to seek out funds outside his regular earnings. If funds become limited, it may cause the person to take irrational actions. They being to tell lies and steal from close friends and relatives. In some cases, their actions may escalate to a drastic level of violence.
Gambling addiction is a serious issue that has destroyed many homes and businesses. However, if signs are observed at an early stage, and preventive measures are taken, gambling may not grow into an addiction.
If you worry that you may likely become obsessed with gambling, or you worry about someone, pay attention to common signs of addiction in the person activity.
If you notice the person spend more time and money on betting sites or gambling house, tries not to disclose their financial expenditures from family, asking for loans to fund their gambling obsession, or engages fraudulent acts. It means the person is developing an addiction to gambling. However, if the person is already so engrossed in these habits, there are chances of recovery.
If you know someone who is suffering from gambling addiction, the best measure to take is to encourage them to seek professional assistance, and help them recover.
A person that is suffering from gambling addiction would find it difficult to own up to their addiction. It is let for you to confront them about the issue and give necessary assistance in a non-judgmental way. This way, the person would be open to you in the most sincerity way, and you would be able to understand them better to help them.
When talking to someone with gambling addiction, make their recovery the upmost priority, some people gamble as a result of depression, loneliness, and low self-esteem.
On the other hand, if you are suffering from this addiction and you want to overcome it, here four steps to recovery.
Steps to quit Gambling Addiction
1. Acknowledge your problems
Acknowledge that you have a problem and you need help, this may not be easy to admit, but you have to do it. By doing this, you become more conscious to tackle the issue.
If you gamble as a result of boredom or socialize, there are healthier ways to unwind and socialize. You can opt for watching a movie, going to parties, or spend time with loved ones.
However, if you gamble as a result of financial struggles, you can consider learning a skill that would help financially or land a paying job you are passionate about.
2. Have a reliable support system
Trying to overcome addiction alone can be very difficult, that is why a support system is necessary. Your support system could consist of friends and family, and you should reach out to them and let them know about what you are battling with.
However, If you have lost all your friends due to your rendezvous, you should seek out professional assistance from a therapist or a psychologist. You can also get to make friends with other persons who battled with obsessive gambling in the past and seek their advice on how to go about overcoming the addiction.
3. Do away with Triggers
When dealing with an addiction like this, you must do away with triggers to avoid relapses. The first trigger to take care of is your money; you can deactivate your debit card, or give it to someone you can rely on for safekeeping away from you.
You can also agree with your bank to run your expenditures for you. If keeping loose change would make you want to gamble, you can create a piggy bank to save them for better expenses.
Also, consider logging out of all your accounts on betting sites and changing the passwords to something you cannot remember. When all avenues for funds and gambling are closed, you would be unable to gamble.
Furthermore, it would be best if you considered rearranging your daily schedule, create time for recreational and other activities that don’t involve gambling. When you have a busy schedule, you wouldn’t have time to gamble.
4. Dealing with Relapses
It is normal to feel the urge to gamble one more time, whenever you feel the urge to gamble you should seek someone’s company, you can call a friend or colleague from work and spend time with them, this way, and you get to distract yourself from the thought of gambling for a while.
You can also learn to procrastinate the urge to gamble but be careful not to allow procrastination affect other essential things. Whenever the thought of gambling hits hard, also try to think about all you stand to lose if you give in to the urges and the disruption it can cause to your progress in quitting.
However, if you give in to the urge by chance, do not be hard yourself or give up the quitting process. All you have to do Is learn from your mistake by identifying what triggered the relapse and handle the situation better next time.