Gambling can be addictive, and can lead to serious financial losses, relationships problems, problems at work and with the law, as well as being dangerous for your health. There are ways to cut down or stop gambling and learn to live a life free from harm.
Why do you gamble?
Some people gamble for fun, to socialize with friends or as a way to self-soothe unpleasant emotions. But there are healthier ways to relieve stress and boredom, and if you have a gambling problem, it’s important to get help.
Compulsive gambling is a mental disorder that can be treated with specialized care. Treatment involves cognitive-behavior therapy, which helps you challenge irrational thoughts and habits that may trigger gambling urges.
When you’re trying to control your gambling, start by setting limits on how much money you can afford to lose. Then don’t take out more money to recoup your losses.
You can also try a support group, such as Gamblers Anonymous, or ask your family and friends for help. These groups use peer support to encourage gambling addicts to stop and take responsibility for their actions.
Beware of the gambler’s fallacy
The gambler’s fallacy is thinking that you can win back what you lost by just putting more money into your gambling account. This can lead to large losses and eventually to severe debt and homelessness.
Over time, you might need to learn other ways to soothe your mood and relieve boredom. These methods can be healthier and more effective than gambling.