Help For Gambling Addiction

Gambling is the betting of money or something else of value on a game of chance with awareness of the risk and in the hope of winning. It ranges from the buying of lottery tickets and scratchcards by people who have little to no income, to sophisticated casino gambling, where a skilled player may be able to win a lot of money. Some people find this pastime enjoyable, while others become addicted to it and cause themselves harm. The problem of gambling can affect personal relationships, performance at work or study, get people into serious debt and even lead to homelessness. In addition, it can have a negative impact on family life and the health of children and relatives.

Some people gamble for fun, and others do it to relieve boredom or other emotional problems. It is important to learn healthier and more effective ways of dealing with unpleasant emotions, such as exercising, spending time with friends who don’t gamble, or taking up new hobbies.

Those who are addicted to gambling often experience social isolation and have a low self-esteem, and some may be violent towards their family members. They also experience financial difficulties, as they have to spend their own money to fuel their addiction and are unable to control their spending habits. They may also lose their jobs due to absenteeism, poor productivity and job performance, and in extreme cases, they might even get into bankruptcy.

There are a number of organisations that offer help and advice to people who are affected by gambling. These services can vary from providing education to implementing treatment programmes. They also provide support for affected individuals and their families. For example, some organisations offer peer support groups based on the model of Alcoholics Anonymous. The aim of these groups is to enable people to gain control over their gambling habits, and to avoid them altogether. Other services include specialised counselling, financial management and legal advice. In addition, some organisations provide educational resources to schools and the public in order to raise awareness of gambling addiction. These include online videos, brochures and booklets.