Gambling: A mental disorder

  • By Team TDO

It is all very well to dream of Vegas, roulette tables and hitting the jackpot, but compulsive gambling is a serious mental condition, which brings many families to utter rack and ruin.

Compulsive gambling can be an addiction where a person just cannot stop 'upping the ante' and generally blows up a lot of money on a wager or at the card tables. All it takes is linking an event to a stake and you got a game on. The person simply cannot stop himself from betting money on it.

How do I know if I have a gambling problem?

  1. You feel restless and excited at the prospect of indulging in gambling.
  2. You spend a lot of time at places of gambling.
  3. You are secretive about your gambling habits.
  4. You accumulate debt and still crave for more gambling.
  5. You can't stop thinking about hitting the jackpot and could beg, borrow and embezzle funds to get there.
  6. Your job and relationships suffer because of your gambling.

Compulsive or pathological gambling has been linked to several mental conditions like:

  1. Depression
  2. Anxiety
  3. Impulsivity

The basic problem of a compulsive gambler is one of 'dysfunctional thinking' where money seems to be the pivotal point in all activity. Some people take calculated risks based on mathematical probabilities and actually do win huge fortunes. That is, of course, a rare occurrence that one has the assistance of a genius like 'rain man' to guide us to fortune. The compulsive gambler only has trouble and nothing else.

Overcoming gambling

Get yourself evaluated by a professional therapist to rule out possibility of any other mental ailment which causes impulsivity.

Don't move around with any money or credit card if you have a huge problem. When the impulse grabs you, make sure your money is safely out of your reach.

Engage in worthwhile activities like charities or learning a new skill so that the gambling instinct is curbed somewhat.

Enrolling an anti-gambling program like Gambler’s Anonymous. The more you share your stories the more your brain will kick in the healing process. It is extremely therapeutic to talk.


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