Mental Health and Gambling

Mental Health and Gambling

Gambling involves risking something of value on an event that is primarily random in the hope of winning a prize. It is common in most societies and has been incorporated into many customs and rites of passage throughout history. Although gambling has many benefits, it can also cause a range of mental health problems.

Gambling is often associated with a range of emotions such as excitement, fear and happiness. However, it can also lead to feelings of stress, shame, regret and guilt. This is especially true when large amounts of money are staked.

In addition, there is a strong link between gambling and mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. Therefore, if you are concerned about how gambling is impacting your mental health, it’s important to seek help. There are various ways to do this, including treatment, support groups and self-help tips.

People gamble for a variety of reasons, from the adrenaline rush to socialising and escaping worries or stress. But for some, it can become a problem that affects their daily lives and those around them. If you are struggling with gambling, it’s worth seeking help as soon as possible.

Symptoms of gambling problems can include:

(1) spending more time and money on gambling than you can afford; (2) lying to family members or your therapist about how much you spend on gambling; (3) thinking you are more likely to win than you actually are; (4) returning to gamble after a loss in the hope of recouping your losses (chasing your bets); (5) jeopardising a job, education or career opportunity because of gambling; (6) being in debt because of gambling; (7) feeling depressed or anxious; and (8) having suicidal thoughts or attempts. It is important to seek help if you are experiencing these symptoms as they can be dangerous and even life threatening.

Gambling is often a trigger for other addictions such as alcohol and drugs, so it’s important to avoid drinking or taking substances while gambling. It’s also a good idea to take a break from the casino, as this can help you focus on your gambling behaviour and identify your triggers. You can also try keeping a gambling journal, which can help you track your gambling habits and identify what is driving them. For example, you might notice that you’re more likely to gamble when you are with friends who also gamble or when you’re stressed. This can give you a clearer picture of your gambling habits and help you to change them.