CALL:269-248-5793 Let Us Do The Searching For you. Get Help Now!

Gambling Addiction Treatment

Gambling Addiction Treatment

Read about Gambling Disorders

Gambling Addiction Treatment Centers


Gambling Addiction Treatment

Gambling addiction is the incessant need to gamble, even at the expense of financial, family and legal stability. For a compulsive gambler, placing a bet provides a feeling of instant reward, similar to that of drugs or alcohol. Gambling addiction will urge the brain to continue betting long after losing. This can lead to secretive behavior to hide the compulsion, deplete family savings, accrue debt and even turn the compulsive gambler to fraudulent behavior or theft to support the addiction.  Compulsive gambling is a treatable condition. If you’re gambling more than you can afford to lose, it’s time to reach out for help.

Signs and Symptoms of Gambling Addiction

Similar to drug addiction – if you know you can’t stop on your own, it’s important to seek help. Guilt or embarrassment may discourage a gambling addict from reaching out – or they may feel that they can stop whenever they want. If you believe that you may have a problem, it couldn’t hurt to speak with a professional for input.

Signs and symptoms of gambling addiction include:

  • Preoccupation with gambling
  • The need to gamble more to feel the same amount of gratification
  • Failure to control or cut back on gambling on your own
  • Feeling anxious, restless or agitation when you try to stop gambling
  • Gambling to relieve stress, depression, anxiety or helplessness
  • Feeling like you have power over your own luck
  • Lying or trying to hide how much money you’ve spent
  • Losing friendships, family members, jobs or educational opportunities due to addiction
  • Using theft or fraud to fund gambling
  • Borrowing money to replenish gambled funds

People who suffer from gambling addiction often wager far beyond their financial limitations. They tend to continue gambling to recover lost money, and go further in debt hoping for a big win. Many addicts feel guilty for their behavior and either stop for a while (also called “remission”), or gamble more to cope with the guilt.  This cycle makes it nearly impossible to quit without help, and may require intervention.

Gambling Addiction Treatment

Treatment for compulsive gambling can vary in method and intensity. A major factor in the success of treatment is the patient’s willingness to acknowledge the problem behavior. Patients often benefit from taking part in behavioral therapies to see the damage of gambling addiction – and how to correct the unhealthy behaviors for positive growth.

Some treatments for gambling addiction include:

  • Therapy – Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an effective treatment option for behavioral disorders in patients. CBT works to expose, identify and replace negative behaviors with better choices.
  • Medications – Antidepressants, mood stabilizers and narcotic antagonists are useful in treating compulsive behaviors in patients.

Depending on the level of care necessary, an inpatient, outpatient or residential treatment program may be utilized to treat compulsive gambling. In the event of a co-occurring addiction or mental health disorder, these programs may be necessary to fully treat gambling addiction.
In order to effectively recover from addiction, it’s important to disclose as much information as is asked about your experience when speaking with your provider and care facilitator.

Gamblers Anonymous

Gamblers Anonymous (GA) is an organization with a similar format to Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA). GA brings recovering gamblers together to talk about their struggle with addiction and feel empowered through community. GA was founded in 1957, and follows the 12-step philosophy originally used in AA.

The 12 steps of GA are:

  1. Admitting we are powerless over gambling – that our lives have become unmanageable.
  2. The belief that a power greater than ourselves can restore us to a normal way of thinking and living.
  3. A decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of this power of our own understanding.
  4. Taking a fearless moral and financial inventory of ourselves.
  5. Admitting to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. Being entirely ready to have these defects of character removed.
  7. Humbly asking God (of our understanding) to remove our shortcomings.
  8. Making a list of all persons we have harmed and become willing to make amends to them all.
  9. Making direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. Continue to take personal inventory and when we are wrong, promptly admit it.
  11. Seek through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Making an effort to practice these principles in all our affairs, we try to carry this message to other compulsive gamblers.

It’s important to note that once recovery has begun, a compulsive gambler can never return to gambling. Having the support of others in recovery can be a powerful tool in rebuilding normalcy without the use of gambling.

Risk Factors for Compulsive Gambling

Certain circumstances can increase the likelihood of developing a gambling addiction. Some factors are situational, like the influence of a friend or family member. Many biological factors play a role in a person developing a gambling addiction, as well.

The most common contributors include:

  • Mental health disorders – Impulse control issues are fairly common for people who struggle with depression, anxiety, substance abuse disorder (SUD), bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. This can contribute heavily to the likelihood of gambling addiction.
  • Age – Gambling addiction is common in younger and middle-aged people.
  • Gender – Men are more likely to succumb to gambling addiction than women, whereas women are more likely to become addicted more quickly than men at a later age.
  • Medications – Some prescribed medications for restless leg syndrome and Parkinson’s disease can contribute to compulsive behaviors.

Personality traits and temperament can also result in gambling compulsion for some people. Competitiveness, impulsivity, incessant boredom and overachieving personalities tend to gravitate toward gambling as a way to satiate the need for a thrill.

Help for Gambling Addiction

Compulsive gambling can feel like a personal failure. In reality, some are simply predisposed to gambling addiction and need help to get back on track. If you or a loved one has a gambling problem, we’re here to help. Let our friendly staff provide you with the answers and resources you need to end the cycle of addiction. Don’t hesitate – call today!


For Immediate Treatment Help Call


Call Now for Immediate Help:
(269) 234-2715

Guide On
Finding Treatment
Guide On
Guide On

For Immediate Treatment Help Call:
(269) 234-2715