Gambling can be fun, but it can also become a problem. If you think you or a loved one may have a gambling disorder, it is important to seek help.
Why people gamble:
Gambling is the act of betting or staking money on an outcome that is not guaranteed and is usually determined by chance. Examples include playing a scratch card or a football match and betting on the outcome of an event, such as a race.
It is a risky activity, and should be avoided at all costs.
A person who has a gambling problem often bets larger amounts of money than they could afford to lose, which can have a negative impact on their finances and family relationships. It can also lead to a feeling of loss of control and a desire to win back the money that has been lost.
It can be addictive, and it can be difficult to stop. Some people can cut down their gambling by themselves, but many people need help to stop.
The symptoms of a gambling disorder vary from person to person and may include:
Depression, stress, substance abuse or anxiety can trigger gambling problems or make them worse. It can be difficult to recognise that you have a gambling disorder, so it is important to talk about your experiences and get support from your doctor or other professionals.
The latest version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) placed pathological gambling in a new category on behavioral addictions. This decision reflects a growing understanding of how gambling can cause physical, cognitive and social harm.