The coming age has brought with it numerous new pathological addictions, one of them being addiction to gambling. Pathological gambling was conferred with the status of a disease by the American Psychiatric Association back in 1980s. Robert L. Custer, M.D., is a pioneer in this field of problem gambling.People who fall prey to this addiction are usually those who secure an income by means of blackjack, poker or other gambling activities. They are professional players who visit casinos not for fun sake, but to employ their skills and earn.Based on their way of playing and the driving force behind it, gamblers can be categorized. For example, while professional gamblers are skillful and good in their game a casual gamblers plays merely for recreation.The symptoms of gambling addiction are usually hard to identify. Since this disease is different from other substance related addictions like drug or alcohol abuse, the indications of this sickness are subtle. The nearest possible way in which the symptoms of this addiction can be stated is through the “Custer three Phase Model”. According tot his model, the gambling addiction can be characterized by three phases: the wining phase, the losing phase and the desperation phase.In the wining stage, the compulsive gambler is ecstatic and overexcited with this earnings and is unwilling to quit gambling. Therefore, the addict usually increases his intensity of gambling . However, losing being the other half of gambling, his wining streak is short-lived. Nonetheless, recurrent losses do not deter him as he wants to win again and get his money back. Addicted gamblers suffer from financial stress, loss of sleep, and mental fatigue in this phase. They face problems at the family front. The patient also tends to borrow huge amounts or avail some money making schemes. As the gambler continues to face loss on every alternate day, he finds it difficult to stay away from gambling. Compulsive gamblers may resort to any means to raise funds for their obsession. They become desperate, with their debts becoming unmanageable. Loss of jobs, fight with friends and family, committing crimes or suicidal tendencies define this phase.The question as to why does one gamble, can not be answered in definitive terms. One of the dominant reasons is the mental health of the gambler. For some people gambling serves as a n escape route from their lives. A compulsive gambler plays for kicks. He is just unable to stay away from it. Many researchers also blame the easy accessibility to casinos. The government and its lottery fund is also widely condemned.Treatment programs and centers exist to treat this disease. Regular therapy and counseling is an effective and a widely used technique to cure this disease. Various support groups have also cropped up, where the addicts share their experiences and strengthen each others desire to quit gambling. Some groups that fund such programs include casinos and state lotteries. Some casinos lay stress on responsible gambling and have taken steps to make the people aware about his addiction.However the first step, before undertaking nay treatment would be to acknowledge this disease. With very slight symptoms and effects this addiction is difficult to catch and acknowledge. Hence it helps to be aware to act wisely.
How do you recognize the warning signals of gambling addiction? Gambling addiction is a person’s mania to part with large amount of money on games of chance. This kind of addiction leads to dire consequences. It will result in failed relationships with those that you love; it can bring about financial ruin; it will make you depress and desperate. A compulsive gambler cannot resist placing bets on any sports affairs.They will continue gambling while they have the money to support this destructive activity. If they run out of funds, they will borrow and end up betting again. Gambling is purely a game of chance so most of the time you lose lots of money and you will end up scrounging for money in any way you can.How will you know if a person is addicted to gambling or not? There are no outward signs that will show any indication that he or she is a compulsive gambler. You only have reason to suspect that a person is into gambling because you will notice that he or she easily let go of money with no qualms. There is no sure fire way of dealing with gambling addiction.It is essential that the person acknowledges that he or she has a gambling dilemma. Next the person must have the nerve to stand up against the addiction and more than ever will need the love and encouragement from loved ones. Compulsive gamblers can go to Gamblers Anonymous or GA which offers an opportunity for them to open up and admit their addiction. Gamblers can attend weekly meetings at GA and there are also support groups that they can turn.If you are not really afraid or ashamed of opening up to a group of people, there is another alternative, such as going into psychiatric medication. While this is another option for the compulsive gamblers, this method is not recommended for everybody. There are medications that have side effects that may complicate matters.The fastest way to find help is support online. This is the fastest kind of support that are the right vehicle for gamblers who need help fast and they are secure knowing that they are not the only ones suffering from gambling addiction.Whatever methods you treatment you decide on, you have to realize that gambling addiction is serious business and should be dealt with accordingly before things get real bad.
Am I a compulsive gambler? What really is compulsive gambling? Is it an addiction like cocaine or heroin?To truly understand compulsive gambling, you need to take a look at the brain. Simply put, there are a number of hormones that are released in the healthy brain that create endorphins that make you feel good. People who are prone to addiction have a deficiency of these hormones, or a chemical imbalance in the brain. For people with an imbalance in the brain, the “rush” that gambling creates actually mimics the release of these hormones in the brain, and makes the person feel good.However, the feeling that gambling may produce in the brain, is not real, and it definitely is not permanent! The momentary ‘high’ that gambling produces will always result in a crash that will leave you feeling worse then when you started. In order to feel better, desperately, you will gamble again, and again. Only to be let down, over and over. Does this sound familiar? If it does, you’re not alone!Because compulsive gambling mimics a feel good feeling in the brain, it is very similar to other addictions. Just as with alcohol addictions and hard drugs such as cocaine, compulsive gambling is an addiction. But is the brain the only thing to blame when it comes to gambling? Of course not. There is more at work, than the physiology of the brain, but it is an important component.Money is an important part of compulsive gambling; however it is not the only thing. Many people believe that gambling is all about winning money, and earning back what you have lost, but that’s not true at all. People who are addicted to gambling are addicted to the feeling that gambling provides. The thrill of winning, the feeling of power, of greatness! As was just explained, compulsive gambling is much more about a feeling than the money.So if gambling is about a feeling, how is it that compulsive gambling is considered an addiction? Someone who has a gambling problem faces some of the same troubles as an individual with another, more identifiable addiction. The addict cannot stop gambling, despite the fact that they know they should, they live with broken lives, families falling apart and debt problems. Compulsive gamblers live in denial as they chase the big win trying to recapture the ‘high’ that they once felt gambling.Compulsive gambling is a hidden addiction; it is not as easy to identify someone with a gambling problem as someone who is an alcoholic. So how do you spot someone with a gambling problem? How can you be sure if you or someone you love has a problem? And why is compulsive gambling really a problem? In the next email, I’ll outline symptoms to watch for in compulsive gambling.
Gambling can be fun, but it can also be a problem. The problem with Gambling is that it can be Addictive.Gambling is big business in America, the Casinos and Bookmakers concerned are willing to spend huge amounts of money on advertising Campaigns. These advertising Campaigns are not selective, they are shown to people of all ages, and all walks of life.The problem with these adverts is that, they can cause some people to become addicted to Gambling, or just to start Gambling in the first place. Children can see these adverts, and especially teenagers quite commonly get addicted to Gambling.Your Child may be suffering from a Gambling addiction if they:
Suffer from lower school Grades.
Don’t go out as much.
Have low self esteem.
Steal things to make money.
Selling personal belongings.
Working to pay off debt.
Watches Gambling related TV programs.
If you have noticed your Child’s school grades slipping, then the reason could be because they are addicted to Gambling. Studying requires a lot of time and effort, if they are more interested in Gambling then their studies may slip.Gambling can be quite expensive, to fund it your Child may sell their personal belongings, steal things, or be in substantial debt. They may even have a part time job to try to get themselves out of debt.
A Child may give up many of the extra curricular activities, that their school offers in order to give themselves more time to spend on Gambling. Parents are concerned that their Children are able to Gamble so easily.The problem with the Internet is that it makes everything so much easier and more convenient, normally this is not a problem. But it is a problem when it makes it possible for Children to access materials and services, that they would not normally be allowed to access. Porn is a prime example, and it is extremely easy for an underage Child to access Porn on the Internet.It’s also extremely easy for them to Gamble, and they can Gamble pretty much anywhere, and at anytime. If the Parents Gamble, then it is much more likely that the Children will also start to Gamble. We learn a lot about what we consider to be acceptable from our Parents, and we all ultimately grow up to be our Parents, no matter how much we try to resist it! If you smoke, then your Children are much more likely to smoke, it’s no different with Gambling.If a Child develops a Gambling problem, then they are unlikely to grow out of it unless they get help. It could well affect the rest of their life. We can’t use the past to decide what will happen to these Children, Gambling Addictions in Children is a fairly new problem.Only thanks to the Internet has Gambling in Children become a problem, therefore it is only a problem that affects the current generation of Children. All we can do is help our Children to help themselves, try to educate them.
A senior citizen who worked for the past forty years lost everything she had saved in under twelve months. Seniors are the heart of our society and something needs to be done to stop the many predators. One of the major predators is gambling establishments. These places continually target senior’s to fill their tables and slot machines for self gain during the day time. To go after seniors who are on fixed incomes is a travesty of justice.Seniors are educated individuals and I have the utmost respect for them. Unfortunately gambling establishments see them as another income source.With all the new gambling establishments opening they all became very competitive with one another. They knew they could no longer fill their tables and or slot machines during the hours of nine to five. They realized that seniors are home during this period of time.
These places created various incentives to market them. The gambling establishments were more then successful. If you go into a majority of the gambling establishments during the hours of nine to five you will now find at least eighty percent or more of the gamblers are seniors.The gambling establishments realized once they get you there, they got you. They were very creative in their marketing techniques.They created group packages specifically designed for seniors. They created day trip program that included transportation, food vouchers and other coupons. The transportation was designed to fill the gambling establishments during the day hours of nine to five.Imagine a bus of seniors who are schedule to arrive at the gambling establishment around nine in the morning. As the bus pulls in everyone is told to be back by five o’clock. Please do not be late the bus will leave. As they get off the bus they all split up and plan to meet back later at the bus depot. After about an hour, half the people on the bus lost all the money they brought. What do they do now for the next seven hours? It’s too early for lunch and the entertainment hasn’t started yet. Some take it in stride others go to one of the many ATM machines and or cash a check. As time goes by they go back to the ATM machine just one more time. The ATM displays the words on the screen you have hit your cash limit for the day. Would you like to use a credit card? The senior thinks this is great and convenient. Next thing you know they have lost five hundred dollars. They ask themselves at the end of the day How did this happen to me?Everyone arrives back at the bus and is ready to leave. Everyone is accounted for and the favorite topic is did you win or lose? No one wants to admit they lost five hundred dollars or more, so their friends they lost a couple of bucks.Gambling creates the situation for people to tell white lies. No one should ever be put in this situation.You then have another situation where one person on the bus hits for a thousand dollars. Is this good news or bad news? I have found those that win their first time are more likely to go back sooner for a chance to win again. The other people on the bus figure maybe next time they will be the big winner.After they arrive home, they decide that they would like to go again. Some will rationalize that they have plenty of money it’s time to enjoy them selves where others just want to have fun. The following week comes and the seniors are back on the bus ready to plat again only to repeat the viscous cycle.There are alternative programs available for senior citizens. Once you know you or someone you know has a problem with gambling it’s imperative to get help before they lose all their assets and their sanity.