(STL.News) Whether gambling addiction is a medical issue or not is still up for debate. Some people agree that it is while others are of the contrary opinion. Still, one clear thing is the fact the
gambling-related harm is a real problem. It can have far-reaching effects on not just individuals but families and even whole societies.
Thankfully, gambling addiction and other forms of problem gambling are curable. If you have been wondering how to help someone with a gambling addiction, you have come to the right place. While this does not qualify as certified medical advice, we can offer some tips. Regardless of whether you are a compulsive gambler, a problem gambler, or an addict, you will need all the help that you can get.
Here is how you can go about traveling the road to recovery:
Acknowledging the Problem
The first step when it comes to dealing will kinds of addictions usually boils down to acknowledging them. This is very important as it makes the other steps much easier. It can even keep the gambler from progressing to the more serious stages of their addiction. That could be by allowing them to make necessary adjustments.
These adjustments could include such things as setting limits. By so doing, they may be able to be more responsible about how they use their time. It will also help them when it comes to managing their finances. Having a fixed bankroll means that once the amount is depleted, you can only play for fun. That is exactly how it should be most, if not all, of the time.
Modern online casinos must have player protection mechanisms built into their services. One of the most useful ones is the self-exclusion feature. This gives the gamblers more control of their gambling habits. Anyone who notices that their gambling habits may be getting out of control can opt for this. It is a powerful tool that can come in handy. The cool-off period lets players reevaluate their actions and sober up before returning.
Gamblers of today can even take advantage of advanced technologies to help with this. Such advancements as artificial intelligence (AI) are now integrated into iGaming platforms. in addition to helping add value to their experience, they also work as powerful player-protection tools. AI can identify individuals who may be portraying unusual gambling behavior. It can then help the player by alerting them or reporting the problem to relevant parties.
Professional Help and Support Groups
The online gambling boom further amplified the age-old concerns about gambling-related harm. Today, there are hundreds to thousands of gambling platforms with millions of users. To counter the effects that gambling may have on the users, several facilities have been established. In places like the United Kingdom, gambling operators are even required to contribute to a fund that caters to problem gambling.
Professional help, in this case, will range from rehabilitation facilities, medication, and even therapy. You just need to identify which one works best for you. Support groups are also, by extension, very useful. By sharing their experience and the steps they take, gamblers can help each other to recover.
Do You Have a Gambling Problem?
As mentioned earlier, the first step to take is to identify if one has a gambling problem. It is not always easy to do this. Even medical experts are yet to find and agree on the specific reasons why people develop gambling problems. Lots of factors including environment and hereditary ones can contribute to it.
Some of the aspects that can be used to pinpoint a gambling problem are:
- A fixation with casinos and gambling
- Overspending on gambling activities
- Substituting other important aspects of life with gambling
- Committing crimes to facilitate gambling activities
These are the hallmarks of other kinds of addictions as well. It shows just how serious the matter is. Recovery is thus an essential part of regaining control of both your finances and your life.
Does This Mean Gambling is Bad?
Not really. Betting has been a part of human culture for centuries. It is the backbone of several economies. Macau and Las Vegas are great examples of the positive impacts that the activities can have. The same can be said for the thousands of online businesses that facilitate gambling activities.
That said, it would be safe to say that just about anyone can fall victim to gambling-related harm. It depends on how good we are at keeping ourselves and our friends or family in check. We can all still enjoy playing casino games without having to worry about it getting out of hand.
At the end of the day, casinos and other gambling platforms are businesses. Their main goal is to make money. Even though the games are random, there is also always a house edge. The house always wins. Understanding this not only helps you stay sober whether you are winning or losing. You also get to have more fun that way.
Martin Smith is the founder and Editor in Chief of STL.News, STL.Directory and St. Louis Restaurant Review. Smith is responsible for selecting content to be published with the help of a publishing team located around the globe. Smith is also responsible for building a network of aggregator sites to manage thousands of aggregated and indexed sources to create the content library used to filter and publish. He is a member of the United States Press Agency.