How to Recognize a Gambling Disorder


If you have a problem with gambling, you may be considering seeking help. Mental health professionals have formulated criteria to identify problem gambling. Many use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), a standard used to diagnose psychological disorders, to identify gambling as an addiction. If a Gambler has made repeated unsuccessful attempts to control their behavior, they may be suffering from Gambling Disorder. Treatment for problem gambling can help you stop the destructive cycle of gambling and regain control of your life.

Problems of problem gambling

Although the game of chance may be fun and entertaining when done with the best intentions, problem gambling can cause financial, emotional, and family issues. The problem can start small and gradually progress. Previously, this condition was called pathological gambling or compulsive gambling. However, the American Psychiatric Association has formally recognized problem gambling as Impulse Control Disorder. As a condition, the patient is unable to control the urge to gamble, which can lead to severe emotional, psychological, and legal consequences.

Help for problem gamblers comes in many forms. Individual, family, and community-based services are available 24/7. Call centres offer free telephone counselling services and information on other resources. The Gamblers Rehabilitation Fund funds community-based counselling services for problem gambling. The telephone helplines operate nationwide. These services provide free, confidential and anonymous counselling for problem gamblers, as well as information on other services and resources. It’s also important to remember that the problem gambling disorder can have serious financial consequences, so it is essential to seek professional help to deal with it.

Symptoms of problem gambling

If you are experiencing any of the following signs, you may be suffering from problem gambling. The urge to gamble is powerful. Gamblers often use gambling to calm their nerves, forget about worries, and even to relieve depression. Problem gamblers lose interest in other activities and may lie about their habits. They may also spend excessive amounts of money and become argumentative about their gambling habits. There are many different ways to recognize if someone is suffering from problem gambling.

People with problem gambling feel the need to bet increasingly large amounts of money to get the same results. They try unsuccessfully to limit their gambling, or to cut back or stop completely. They may also lie about their problem gambling, and have lost significant relationships and job opportunities because of it. Some people even borrow money to fund their gambling. If you suspect that your friend is suffering from problem gambling, contact a professional immediately. Gambling addiction can be devastating, and you may need help.

Treatment options for problem gambling

The availability of multiple treatment options for problem gambling is challenging. Generally, people with gambling addictions would recommend professional treatment modalities, such as psychotherapy or cognitive behavioral therapy, to those with the condition. Although this form of treatment is often resistant by those who suffer from the condition, it can lead to greater control and help to heal relationships and finances. Cognitive behavioral therapy, which focuses on modifying or replacing unhealthy beliefs, is also useful. Likewise, family therapy may be helpful in treating problem gambling.

The downtown core is home to the largest number of problem gambling addiction treatment centers in the city. Richmond Street and Parliament Street are two areas accessible from the Gardiner Expressway, and Lawrence Avenue East and Kipling Heights are areas where there are more centers. These treatment centers focus on a wide range of addictions, including gambling. Generally, patients seeking treatment for gambling disorders are often advised to enter an inpatient program, which removes them from the immediate environment of their gambling habit. During the program, they learn to identify their triggers and to cope with them after treatment.