Gambling has been a favorite pastime among people from all walks of life. As early as 16BC, the Romans were known cast lots to decide who would get a particularly prized possession. There was also an Asian leader who made crucial decisions by the roll of dice, although not a wise thing to do. The bottom line is that gambling has been in our midst for years on end. Popular as it might be, however, this activity can be dangerous if moderation is not exercised.
It is true that gambling can cause addiction. Science has revealed how a gamer’s brain works when taking part in gaming. To reminisce, games cause the brain to release a hormone called dopamine. Dopamine is released when the mind feels rewarded. In lay terms, it is called the happy hormone. Excessive gambling forces the brain to secrete the hormone in large doses. When this happens, the gamer will always have a compulsive need to gamble despite the consequences.
Betting addiction leads to irresponsible behavior. Moreover, it can also cause anti-social tendencies and finally lead to poor judgment and decision making. All in all, gambling addiction is the worst possible result you would want from the treasured pastime. The nadir is that it does not only affect the person with the disorder. The reaches of pathological gambling have a way of reaching family members and friends as well.
Online casinos have taken precautions to ensure that those afflicted by the addiction receive special attention. Gambleaware is one of the institutions that help to control the spread of addiction by referring addicts to support groups and restricting their gambling activities. Other such institutions partner with online casinos and can be contacted by following a link on the website of any online casino. For instance, at fiz casino punters are vehemently warned of the dangers of the disorder and further recommended to seek professional intervention if they feel that they might be afflicted.
However, precautions taken by these establishments are merely cautionary and interim. Players must make a bold step and address the problem on a personal level. The first step is to recognize that they have the problem. To do this, it is essential to separate the myths from facts.
Myths and Facts of Gambling Addiction Debunked
- It is a common misconception among punters that a pathological gambler has to gamble every day. This is far from the truth. The addiction is evident when gambling leads to problems. It does not necessarily have to be regular. As long as this activity causes issues such as poor financial decisions, mistrust among family members, and other anti-social characteristics, then the party involved might have a problem and must seek professional help as soon as possible
- Another myth is that if the gambler can afford it, then it is not a problem. The problems associated with excessive gambling do not merely affect finances. They also affect relationships and judgment. Being able to afford this activity is a Band-Aid on a bullet wound. It only alleviates the superficial symptoms and not the deep-seated troubles.
- Many people also believe that it is wise to help a gambler settle the debts accruing from their addiction. Seemingly proper, it does not address the main problem. Nothing will stop that gambler from racking up more debt.
Addressing the Problem
The good news is that the punters who manifest the problem can take useful self-help measures to tackle the problem. This write-up will give five ways to help an addicted gambler face the problem first-hand.
- Seek support from a network of friends or support group
One of the many risks associated with the addiction is antisocial behavior. This is sort of paradoxical since people with compulsive gambling problems need the support of friends and family more than anything. Friends and family help the punter to ward off any thoughts of gaming. Social interactions pre-occupy the mind and will aid the gambler to forget that they need to bet.
- Tackle underlying mood disorders
Like any other form of addiction, it is triggered when the person feels some a certain way. Some emotions, complications, and even substance abuse might be the cause of the compulsion to gamble. As long as these disorders persist, there will always be that lingering thought to wager. It is imperative to sort these problems first before addressing other issues.
- Find an alternative pastime
Players take part in gambling for many reasons. The most common could be the rush and excitement that one feels when they take part in a game. When looking for an alternative, it is imperative that the substitute’s characteristics that correspond to the perceived feeling of the addictive activity. For example, sports can offer the same thrills and excitement. Actively taking parts in sports can help the afflicted party to stop the addiction with little or no risk involved. Other alternatives include book clubs and outdoor activities.
- Set banking limits
A compulsive punter may make arrangements with their bank to restrict withdrawals to a certain minimal amount. This would help the gambler to manage their finances as well as keep their spending at bay. Alternatively, the player may also entrust their account with a stern person such as a family member or an accountant.
- Admitting that you have a problem
Self-admonishment is perhaps the most challenging decision of all. There is always that reservation that you cannot be affected by addiction. However, it is essential to understand that gambling addiction can affect anyone regardless of status, race, and gender. Admitting that you have a problem will make the subsequent steps more comfortable. You will be able to willingly seek professional help, join a support group, and actively manage your finances better.
Players should ensure that they gamble responsibly every time they hit the casino. This may be done by setting betting limits, knowing when to quit after a losing streak, and also having a strict budget. Finally, always be in the company of peers that support you and motivate you to do good.