Gambling Addiction: Understanding Pathological Gambling

As uncanny as it may seem, some gamblers may not be able to determine if they are gambling just right or are gambling too much. That is what the words gambling addiction or disorder try to explain. Gambling behavior varies from one person to the other, but they share a common ground to call it pathological—extreme. If you are worried that you might have gambling addiction or disorder, here are some things you need to know about it:

Gambling Addiction as a Disorder

In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders-5, gambling disorder is under the new category of behavioral addictions. Like substance-related disorders, those diagnosed with gambling disorders possess almost the same clinical expression, comorbidity, and physiology. If you are looking for signs and symptoms that you might use to assess, you must possess the following characteristics that make you qualified to be one.

If you have a gambling addiction, you feel the need to gamble with more money as time passes by as it gives you excitement from time to time. You are feeling restless or agitated, just thinking about stopping your gambling activities. You also tried stopping, but you cannot do so. You are always preoccupied with gambling, how to do it, and what to do to get what you need. It includes finding strategies and funds to support your craft. When distressed, you see gambling as a way to cope. When you lose money, you will keep going back to win back what you lose. You tend to lie about how much time and money you spent on gambling. You might experience jeopardized relationships at home, work, and friends because of it. Last but not least, you rely on other people in desperate attempts to win back what you lose in the endeavor.

If you got at least four of these for a year, you might be experiencing gambling addiction and that you need to seek help from professionals. Being a pathological gambler will not only put you on distress psychologically but also impair your financial aspects. It is a must that you seek help so that you can make necessary adjustments before it is too late.

Most gamblers will not pay attention to their behavior as it does not cause significant impairment or losses in the meantime. However, the need to control the conduct is necessary to prevent further distress. It is not only for your physical health but also for your mental health as well. It is okay to spend some time and money placing bets and having fun, but being conscious about how you spend money and how you play is still the best thing you can do to prevent future concerns.

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