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Treatment For Gambling Disorders

Gambling is a form of risk-taking where the gambler places something of value on an event whose outcome is determined at least in part by chance. This could include betting on sports games, horse races, card games, or events such as a lottery. People may also place bets on things that do not have a material value, such as a game of marbles or collectible pieces like Magic: The Gathering. Typically, the amount of money wagered is measured in dollars or other forms of currency. Lotteries are a common form of gambling, as they are low-risk and require only the purchase of a ticket.

Research indicates that about 2 million adults in the United States meet a diagnosis for gambling disorder. Many people have mild or moderate gambling problems, and are able to control their urges and limit their losses. For those who are struggling, a combination of therapy and other strategies can help, including family therapy, marriage counseling, credit and debt counseling with StepChange, and support groups.

The first step in treating gambling addiction is admitting you have one. This can be difficult, especially if you’ve lost a lot of money or have strained or broken relationships as a result of your gambling. You can find a therapist who understands gambling addiction and is trained to help you break the cycle. Treatment for gambling disorders often involves cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), which looks at your beliefs and habits around betting. It can also be helpful to explore other ways of managing your moods and relieving boredom, such as exercising, spending time with friends who don’t gamble, or finding hobbies.