Responsible gambling refers to the practice of gambling in a way that is safe, controlled, and within one’s means. It involves being aware of the risks associated with gambling, setting limits on the amount of time and money spent on gambling, and avoiding chasing losses.
Some signs that you may have a gambling problem include:
- Gambling more often or for longer periods of time than you intended.
- Having difficulty controlling your urge to gamble.
- Feeling restless or irritable when attempting to reduce or stop gambling can be a sign of a gambling problem. This symptom can be associated with the development of tolerance and withdrawal symptoms, similar to those seen in substance use disorders. Individuals may experience feelings of anxiety, depression, or agitation when they try to cut back or stop gambling, as their brain has adapted to the constant influx of dopamine associated with the behavior. It is important to note that these symptoms can be intense and uncomfortable, which can make it difficult for individuals to quit on their own. This is why seeking professional help can be a valuable step in addressing a gambling problem and working towards recovery.
- Losing interest in activities that you used to enjoy.
- Gambling to escape problems or to relieve stress.
- Lying to family and friends about your gambling.
- Borrowing money or selling possessions to finance gambling.
- Neglecting responsibilities at work, school, or home because of gambling.
- Putting yourself or others at risk (including driving under the influence)
- Struggling to stop and or mitigate gambling habits despite the negative consequences.
If you recognize any of these signs in yourself or someone you know, it may be a sign of a gambling problem and it’s important to seek help. There are multiple resources that you can use to get help. Gamblers Anonymous, National Council on Problem Gambling and other support groups can be good options. Some countries also have specialized helplines, that you can call to get more information and support. You can also find some helpful problem gambling links here