What does it mean to gamble?
Gambling can be defined as an act of betting money or fancy things within an environment, to get a higher reward for it.
While some people see it as a dangerous game, others see it as a mild way of having fun.
When does gambling become an addiction?
Gambling can be considered a problem when a person is unable to control the urge to bet.
Addiction to gambling has negative side effects which range from physical to psychological disorder. People who are addicted to gambling may experience symptoms like migraine, distress, depression, and other anxiety-related issues.
Some people think that others are driven to gamble because of financial difficulties, but the fact is that gambling is more of an emotional problem than a physical one.
DISTINCT SIGNS OF ADDICTION TO GAMBLING
Some signs that indicate gambling problems include;
- Constantly borrowing money to play: Borrowing is the first thing most gamblers do when they start experiencing financial crises, and they go as far as seeking help from friends, family, colleagues, or whoever seems to be available just to satisfy their desire to bet.
- Lying: A good number of gamblers will try to hide their addiction from relatives such as their immediate family, partners, friends, and loved ones for as long as possible, and most times lying may seem like a way to keep their addiction a secret.
- Zeal to recover: While most gamblers play to win, others play to recover what they’ve lost in time past. Some go as far as telling themselves that they will quit whenever they recover all that they’ve lost, but the truth is that it rarely happens.The repercussion of thinking and acting in such a manner will only usher the gambler into more debts and losses.
- Increased stakes: similar to alcohol and drug addiction, people who gamble often tend to need to continuously increase whatever they stake on the table from time to time. What contradicts the whole thing is that the more they put in with hopes of recovering what they’ve lost, the more that they lose.
- Obsession: This is a scenario where gamblers invest so much time and energy playing profitless games. And whether they have the money or not, these set of people will always look for a reason to go out of their way to gamble.
- Inability to say to ‘No’: A good number of people know the negative impact of gambling with their finances, yet they can’t resist the urge to discontinue simply because they think that they’ve come a very long way.
- The withdrawal syndrome: Whenever gamblers decide to quit, they tend to experience what is being referred to as ‘psychological withdrawal symptoms’, and this is similar to what drug and alcohol addicts face when they trying to quit their bad habit. It requires a very strong level of determination to break free from such shameful habits.
- Gambling as a stress relief: While most gamblers play just for the fun of it, others use it as a means to distract themselves from their real-life problems. But rather than relieving the gambler of his problems, it tends to create more loopholes for him/her.
- Theft and gang-related offenses: Gamblers often get to the point where they need to step up the level of excitement that they experience while playing, thereby doubling whatever it is that they stake from time to time.They also move from borrowing from family and friends to stealing and partaking in so many illegal activities just to keep funding their bad lifestyle.
- When gambling becomes a priority: with the eyes of the gambler on the prize, it is easy to ignore all the financial, social, and professional challenges in their lives, such persons should seek proper treatment.
Gambling over the years has caused havoc in many countries across the globe. It’s one of the contributing factors that increase the rate of crime in our society today. Whether you’re playing to have fun or simply playing to distract yourself, it’s always important to retrace your steps whenever you feel it's getting out hand.