How to Overcome a Gambling Addiction
Whether it’s buying a lotto ticket, placing bets on the horse races or playing on the pokies, gambling is a popular pastime that involves putting something of value on a random event with the intention of winning something else of value. While it may seem harmless, gambling can have serious consequences for some people. This is why we have organisations such as Gambler’s Anonymous to help people overcome their addiction to gambling.
If someone is struggling with a gambling addiction, they should first seek treatment from a counsellor. Counsellors are trained to assess and treat gambling addiction, and they can also assist with budgeting and debt management. They can help gamblers develop a plan to pay off their credit cards, and they can teach them how to manage their money in the future.
When trying to quit gambling, it is important to know your triggers. You can identify these by writing down your thoughts and feelings before and after gambling sessions in a journal. This will help you figure out what causes you to crave gambling and find healthier ways to relieve unpleasant emotions and boredom. For example, you could try exercising, spending time with friends who don’t gamble and practicing relaxation techniques.
Another way to combat a gambling addiction is to set limits for yourself. It’s a good idea to start with a small amount of money that you are willing to lose and then increase this limit as you get better at managing your money. This will help you avoid chasing your losses and prevent you from going into debt.
In addition, you should stay away from gambling establishments and avoid socialising with people who gamble. You should also try to find other hobbies and recreational activities that are healthy and can help you focus on your goals. For example, you can join a sports team, book club or take up a new hobby. Alternatively, you can find online casinos with safe gambling options and play for fun without risking your hard earned money.
One of the most common reasons why people develop a gambling problem is that they are trying to cover up other financial issues. For instance, they might be attempting to pay off credit card debt or unpaid medical bills with gambling winnings. If you suspect a friend or family member is doing this, you should try to bring the issue to their attention and support them in seeking treatment.
If you are unable to stop gambling, you should seek professional help as soon as possible. There are several options available for treatment, including residential rehab and outpatient therapy. In residential rehab, you will live in a treatment facility where you will receive professional therapy and learn how to cope with your addiction. Outpatient therapy is less intensive and is more suited for those who have mild to moderate gambling problems.
Depending on your individual needs, you might be able to find a local gambling addiction recovery program that offers group or individual therapy. In group therapy, you’ll be surrounded by others who are struggling with the same issues and can offer support.