If you have a loved one who is addicted to gambling, it’s vital to understand the different ways you can help them overcome this problem. Gambling addiction can be extremely stressful and can leave people with thoughts of suicide. If you have any idea that your loved one may be attempting suicide, call 999 or visit your nearest A&E emergency department immediately. People who suffer from mental illness are also more likely to engage in harmful gambling, which they may do to distract themselves or feel better. Another way to help a loved one with a gambling addiction is to set up boundaries in how the money is managed. The first and most important responsibility of managing the finances in the household should be to ensure your safety, so make sure your partner is not a contributor to the problem.
The next step in helping a loved one with a gambling addiction is strengthening your support system. Friends and family can offer support and encouragement if you share common interests. Other options include enrolling in education classes, volunteering in good causes, or joining a peer support group. If you are unable to overcome the urge to gamble alone, consider joining a group like Gamblers Anonymous. This is a 12-step program modeled on Alcoholics Anonymous and includes the help of a sponsor, who is a former gambler who has experienced the same problems.
Legalized gambling has many negative consequences. It often increases local crime and destroys individuals and families. It can also be highly addictive, so many people who get involved in gambling will develop compulsive behavior. One study in Iowa found that the rate of compulsive gambling in the state rose from 1.7 percent to 5.4 percent after legalization. These statistics show that legalized gambling can be devastating to individuals and their families. The gambling industry in Canada is estimated at $335 billion dollars. The general population is now more likely to fund social and important initiatives with the proceeds from gambling.
While many denominations in the United States oppose gambling, others have different laws on what can be considered a gambling place. In most cases, gambling involves the use of money or property, and sometimes other valuable items. In some states, the value of the property at stake does not matter, as long as it has value. In some cases, however, the denomination of the individual does not matter – as long as the property is worth at least $5, it is illegal to gamble.
While gambling can affect a person’s mental health, it is also treatable just like other addictions. CBT is often used to help people overcome their addictions and change their thinking patterns. It is important to remember that there are no approved medicines to cure gambling addiction, but they may help people with other co-occurring conditions. While help is available from friends and family, a decision to stop gambling is ultimately up to an individual. And no matter how helpful a treatment program may be, the best way to overcome a gambling problem is to get help from a qualified professional.