Compulsive gambling can be defined as an irresistible urge to continue gambling, even when the activity is taking a devastating toll on your daily life. It is a serious addiction that can result in lost time, financial stress, and personal shame. Like any addiction, compulsive gambling is progressive and will lead to severe emotional, relational and financial consequences over time. Compulsive gambling can even facilitate intense depression and suicidal thoughts, which makes early intervention vitally important.
Compulsive gambling issues have been on the rise in recent years, with greater availability of video gaming machines. The addiction often accompanies other addictions, such as dependency on drugs or alcohol. It is important to learn how to recognize the symptoms of compulsive gambling and seek professional treatment to break the gambling cycle and restore your life to a healthy, positive place once again.
Symptoms of Compulsive Gambling
There are a number of potential signs someone is struggling with compulsive gambling:
- Experiencing a rush when taking big gambling risks
- Taking increasingly bigger and more expensive risks
- Obsession with past gambling experiences
- Using gambling as a way to escape stress or problems
- Inability to control one’s gambling behavior
- Feeling guilty after gambling
- Hiding gambling behavior from those around you
Treatment for Compulsive Gambling
Compulsive gambling is typically an addiction that develops over time. If you are concerned that you or someone you love is becoming a compulsive gambler, take our Gamblers Anonymous survey by clicking here.