Gambling addiction isn’t just a bad habit that gets you into trouble with the law; it is a serious disorder that destroys your life and destroys the lives of those close to you. It is like a disease that eats away at your emotional and physical well being until you can’t take anymore. For many people, gambling addiction begins with simple gambling issues; you may be a compulsive gambler who loses their money at a fast pace, or perhaps you aren’t very strategic when you play. No matter what your personal circumstances are, if you suffer from a gambling problem, you need help. You need treatment for gambling addiction.
Like most addictions, gambling addiction has a biological and neurological basis. Scientific research now shows that excessive gambling does indeed begin in the brain and not just from the actions of the individual person engaging in the activity. Gambling addiction, like most addictions, stems from a change in the function of neurotransmitters in the brain. These neurotransmitters are responsible for transmission of impulses from one nerve cell to another. As you may know, dopamine is one of the addictive substances found in the human brain.
In recent years, medical researchers have been studying the connection between substance abuse and gambling addiction. They have discovered a surprising correlation between the two. People who suffer from compulsive gambling disorder (especially online gambling addiction) tend to have low levels of dopamine receptors in their brains. This is true for all people, but it stands out to the gambling addict. Because the levels of dopamine are low, there is a lack of signals for the pleasure centre (pleasure) in the brain; without the proper triggers, these individuals find it difficult to maintain any form of self-control.
Another interesting aspect to this addiction relates to the way that gamblers may be suffering from other mental health problems. There have been many studies that have focused on the link between gambling addiction and depression. It appears that the two are very closely intertwined. It has been found that many people who suffer from gambling problems also suffer from depression. However, it isn’t necessarily the gambling problem that causes the depression. The gambling addiction itself may be what is causing the depression, or the depression may actually arise because the person suffers from another mental health problem such as bi-polar disorder.
You must remember that there are always negative consequences associated with gambling addiction. The problem is that these negative consequences often relate to your family, friends and loved ones. If you have a loved one that suffers from a severe gambling problem, you have to be very careful how you approach the issue. While there is certainly no shortage of negativity surrounding the issue, there also exists a positive side to it as well. The positive side is that many addicts have turned their lives around and have become excellent public speakers, politicians, entrepreneurs and other professionals because of their gambling addiction.
The first step towards recovery from gambling addiction begins with an in-depth analysis of your relationship with the problem gambler. You have to ask yourself why you are allowing him or her to gamble so excessively. Many times the solution is more apparent than the cause. If you are gambling because you feel like gambling or if there is an unusually strong possibility that you will lose, then you need to eliminate the possibility of gambling even if you are not gambling. It’s just not worth risking having the addictive behavior even if it means that you could be financially secure at the same time.
Other warning signs that you have a gambling addiction include spending an excessive amount of money on bets or cards. This doesn’t mean that the gambler is going to win, but the constant pattern of overspending indicates that the gambler has a problem. You should also be able to recognize betting errors, such as the number of times a card or a group of cards has been dealt. Gambling gamblers are also often sloppy with their financial information. A gambler with a gambling addiction may be careless in business dealings, planning his money scheme for the next few weeks or months instead of investing his money into a sound portfolio.
Although many people associate gambling addiction with substance abuse, there are many people who engage in online gambling and don’t even have a substance abuse problem. Just because someone is spending an excessive amount of money at casinos does not mean that they have a problem. Many addicts get into online gambling, because they are unable to leave their homes and suffer withdrawal symptoms when they are not gambling. While it’s not possible to completely remove all of the stress and anxiety from a person’s life, substance abuse should be a serious consideration when it comes to concluding that someone is compulsive gambling.