Gambling can be a great way to relieve unpleasant emotions and unwind or socialize, but it can also be dangerous. Whether you’re playing at the casino or online, it’s important to know when to stop. It’s also essential to have a support network and learn healthier ways of relieving anxiety, stress, or depression.
Identify underlying mood disorders and seek treatment for them before you start gambling. If you have an underlying mood disorder, gambling will only make it worse. It’s also important to get help if you’re losing control of your finances and can’t afford to lose anymore.
There are several ways to treat a gambling problem, including cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), which can help you recognize your patterns of behaviour and develop new ways to think about betting. Behavioral therapies can also teach you how to avoid thoughts or feelings that trigger a gambling impulse.
Reach out for support from family, friends, and professionals. These people can provide guidance, encouragement, and a safe environment to discuss the effects of gambling on your life. They can also offer you a chance to share your experiences with other people who have similar problems.
Strengthen your support network and learn to rely on it more often. This may mean talking to your family about your gambling addiction, seeking help at a treatment center or rehab, and joining a recovery group. You can also try to find a mentor or sponsor in a program such as Alcoholics Anonymous.
Understanding your brain’s response to gambling is important for determining how you will feel during and after a session. Your brain releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter that makes you feel good when you win. But this release can be triggered by other things, such as stress, depression, or substance abuse.
Taking a break from gambling can help you re-energize your body and mind. You can try a meditation technique, take up a hobby, exercise, or spend time with friends who don’t gamble.
Consider getting a second opinion about your gambling. Your doctor can examine your symptoms and recommend a treatment plan.
Harms from gambling are diverse and often diffuse, unlike harms that result from physical illnesses or substance abuse. This complexity can impede efforts to understand and measure gambling harms.
The most common measures of harm from gambling include symptomatology and behavioural indicators. These measures are often inadequate and do not provide a stable and accurate measure of gambling harms.
This is because they are prone to a variety of confounding factors. For example, a person with a gambling disorder who is also suffering from depression or stress may have a difficult time coping with their symptoms when they’re trying to control their urges to gamble. They might also experience a greater relapse rate when trying to overcome their addiction.
A functional definition of gambling related harm was developed that can be operationalised to support the measurement of gambling related harms consistent with standard epidemiological protocols used in public health. It also incorporates harms to those who work in the gambling industry or who are involved in treatment and support services accessed by people experiencing problems with gambling.