Gambling is a risky activity where people place bets on events, such as sports matches. This could involve a single person or group of people placing bets on an event, or a commercial entity placing a bet with the hope of winning something else of value.
Problem gambling is a disorder that occurs when someone’s gambling behaviour has negative consequences for their life. The symptoms of a problem are similar to those of substance abuse and mental health disorders.
Whether gambling is problematic or not depends on a variety of factors, including where you live and your beliefs and coping styles. If you have a gambling problem, you may need to consider cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) to help you learn how to control your gambling urges and change your thinking and behaviour.
The harms that gambling can cause vary, depending on how often and how much you gamble. These range from a loss of time with a loved one to financial stress and even death.
Harms can be treated by talking to your doctor, seeking support from a professional or getting help from friends and family. Some people may need to stop gambling altogether.
Managing a gambling addiction is not as easy as quitting, but it is possible to overcome the cravings for gambling and develop healthier alternatives. Creating a strong support network, surrounding yourself with responsible people and finding ways to distract yourself can all help you overcome your gambling problems.