Addiction to Gambling

Addiction to gambling, better known as compulsive gambling is a type of impulsive-control disorder. Their urge to gamble goes beyond their control despite being aware of its consequences and ill effects. It is all they can think of. Compulsive gamblers shed their lifestyle and engage themselves completely into it irrespective of their monetary conditions. Gradually, it extracts everything out of an individual he/she probably owns. It is important to understand the symptoms associated with it and take remedial steps to cure it at the earliest. Problem Gambling is a behaviour wherein an individual spends more and more money, chasing losses despite knowing its serious consequences is known to have a gambling problem. Also known as ludomania, it is an urge of the individual to continuously gamble. Severe gambling problems may be associated with pathological gambling which a common disorder is found amongst many gamblers. It is associated at the cost of the family where an individual stakes not only his money but also his familial relationships at stake.

It is important for individuals to be aware of the symptoms associated with gambling, and if needed take remedial measures in order to avoid any major problems associated with it.

Addiction to gambling is often referred to as a hidden illness as there are no obvious symptoms attached to it in comparison to those of alcoholics or drug addicts. But the underlying symptoms need to be carefully observed in order to take timely help if required.

Some of the symptoms shown by compulsive gamblers are:

  1. Secretive about gambling: When people hide or lie about their gambling habits from others. It is an indication that they themselves are aware that there seems to be a problem yet are unwilling to accept the same.

  2. Face trouble controlling their gambling: When people despite making best efforts to control their urge to gamble are unable to do so indicates the hidden problem. It signified that the problem has already been laid in and necessary steps need to be taken in at the earliest.

  3. Gambling even when broke: When people gamble despite the fact that they do not have any more money left with them in the hope of winning some and recovering their lost money in yet another indication of the problem.

  4. Denial to acknowledge the problem: Continuous denial to the problem can never be a solution to it. Yet many gamblers do so despite being aware that there lies one. Unless one acknowledges that there is an issue, a solution can never be arrived at.

  5. Withdrawal from families and friends: Gradual withdrawal from family and friends and investing more time alone is yet another important symptom.

Compulsive gamblers deal with problems within themselves, and hence what they really need to get out of the problem is the love and support of their families and friends. Considering it as a taboo and hiding the problem can never be a solution to it. Sincere efforts to overcome the problem has to be made by him, only then will the addiction to gambling by nipped in the bud.