7 Reasons To Seek Addiction Treatment
Substance use disorder, which is more colloquially known as drug addiction, is a serious mental...
Gambling addiction, or gambling disorder, is a behavioral addiction that can be very detrimental to livelihoods, families, and mental health. A gambling disorder can be defined as a disorder that stimulates compulsive gambling, risk-taking with money, and maladaptive gambling behaviors. This can cause incredibly high amounts of stress for the individual. Gambling disorder rates have risen over the years with increased legalization, due to the convenience and accessibility of gambling.
According to The Journal of General Internal Medicine and F1000 Research, a gambling disorder can be characterized by a number of behaviors and clinical conditions. In order to be diagnosed, a person must fit 5 of the many criteria or symptoms for a gambling disorder. These criteria can include:
To be diagnosed with a gambling disorder, a person must meet 5 or more of the above criteria, while not having a manic episode. Though gambling is fun for many, and people may feel some of the euphoria or the need to chase after losses afterward, a true gambling disorder goes far beyond the game.
Addictions and compulsions are mutually exclusive but can have similar traits. Addiction is a habitual need for a thing or activity, while a compulsion is the inability to not take part in a particular behavior. Compulsion has been described by some as being “forced” to do the activity, due to high stress, anxiety, panic, or fear of conflict/pain if they do not do so. The Journal of General Internal Medicine points out that gambling can certainly be an addiction, and there is evidence as such.
Gambling can also be a compulsion, and many researchers argue that evidence supporting gambling as a compulsion seems the most relevant. However, those with diagnosed obsessive-compulsive disorder do not hold strong correlations with gambling. In fact, the likelihood of a person with obsessive-compulsive disorder having this addiction is very small. This suggests that there is perhaps a mix of addiction and compulsion that drives those who struggle with gambling addiction to continue to gamble.
Gambling disorders are often compared to substance use disorders. This is due to the many commonalities of how substance addiction and gambling addiction begin. They both seem to begin recreationally, leading to increased amounts of pleasure/positive benefits. Then they spiral into having detrimental effects on livelihood, family, and safety as a person continues to follow their addiction. Though they are mutually exclusive, gambling and substance addictions can be reinforced by promotions like free drinks for active gamblers, smoking in gambling halls, and active drug or alcohol use surrounding the gambling environment.
The most common and effective treatments for gambling disorders are:
Gambling addiction or disorder is nothing to be ashamed of, and the damage gambling disorders may cause can be fixed. We know you can overcome gambling disorders here at RECO Intensive. People can recover from these disorders and they do every day. Finding a way to stay in the present and make the conscious choice not to gamble can be really challenging and takes a lot of practice. Many think of the consequences of gambling disorders, or what they’ve lost. Some may also think of their goals and aspirations beyond gambling. At RECO Intensive, we understand that gambling disorder treatment requires a high level of therapy, care, and strategies for coping with loss and with your addiction. Our professional staff and experienced alumni can provide you with cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness practices, yoga, individual therapy, and even adventure therapy for those who love adrenaline. Call RECO Intensive today at (561) 464-6533. Let’s get back to a brighter future.
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