How to Cope With a Gambling Addiction


Coping with a loved one who has a gambling addiction can be extremely challenging. The pain of seeing your loved one lose everything they own to gambling is often overwhelming, and you may feel ashamed. Reaching out to friends and family for help can help you realize that you’re not alone. You can also set boundaries for money management, ensuring your loved one remains accountable and avoids relapse. After all, the first responsibility you have in managing the family’s finances is to keep yourself safe.

Pathological gambling

In general, the treatment of pathological gambling involves psychotherapy and medication, similar to treatments for substance use disorders. Patients in these groups participate in self-help groups. Approximately 70% of pathological gamblers have a history of another psychiatric condition. Moreover, treatment for pathological gambling is highly personalized. Most treatments aim at reducing symptoms of the disorder. However, the effectiveness of these treatments depends on their effectiveness. Hence, many patients may require several treatments, which may be insufficient for them.

While analyzing the process of decision-making under ambiguity, we found that pathological gamblers’ cognitive resources are deregulated and impaired. Specifically, they fail to control the use of goal-driven resources, which are necessary for identifying, describing, and avoiding their own behavior. Pathological gamblers’ failure at self-control may result from deregulation of both impulsive and reflective processes, which hinder their ability to resist temptations.


If you’ve ever been tempted to gamble, you probably have an idea of how addictive it can be. It has negative physical, psychological, and social repercussions. Gambling addiction is considered an impulse-control disorder, and is often associated with self-harm tendencies and depression. Gambling can also cause sleep deprivation, which can lead to pale skin, acne, and dark circles under the eyes. Unfortunately, it isn’t easy to stop or even recognize the signs of a gambling addiction.

The DSM-IV includes symptoms of compulsive gambling disorder, including the need to spend large amounts of money, preoccupation with gambling, and increasing amounts wagered. Other symptoms include reliance on others for financial assistance and the need to hide the extent of their gambling habits. Symptoms of this disorder can begin as early as adolescence and may continue into adulthood. While many symptoms can be common in a person with gambling problems, some may be more severe than others.


Various methods are available to treat gambling addiction. However, they do not always work for everyone. Additionally, many of these methods are not medically approved. It is important to talk with your doctor about your addiction problem before trying any of these methods. You may also want to check with an addiction specialist before beginning any treatment. A 12-step program, which follows the same principles as Alcoholics Anonymous, may help you to overcome your addiction to gambling.

When seeking treatment for gambling addiction, you should speak to your primary care doctor about your gambling habits. Your doctor may also discuss your gambling history with family members. Because most doctors are bound by confidentiality laws, they cannot discuss your medical history without your permission. Some drugs can trigger compulsive behaviors, so a physical exam is essential. Afterward, you can get help from a licensed professional. In some cases, you may even be able to stop gambling on your own.