Whether you’re an avid gambler or you’re simply unsure of your ability to control your urges, you should know that quitting gambling can be a difficult and lengthy process. Professional help, a support group, or a treatment program can help you overcome your addiction. It’s also important to have supportive family and friends who can help you quit.
Problem gambling is a serious disorder that can affect a person’s family life, finances, and legal standing. It is a condition that often worsens with time. It is also sometimes called compulsive or pathological gambling. The American Psychiatric Association has recognized it as an impulse control disorder.
The debate over legalized gambling continues to rage in the United States. A recent Pew Research Center poll showed that less than one third of Americans consider gambling to be immoral, but more than 70% believe legalized gambling causes people to spend more money than they can afford. A similar survey from 1989 showed that only 62% of respondents felt the same way about gambling.
Off-track gambling involves betting on horse racing outside of a race track. Off-track betting is legal and sanctioned and is available in many states.
The public has a right to know what is going on in government lotteries. While federal lottery regulations are weak, many states have much more comprehensive rules. All lottery board meetings and legislative hearings are public. And all lottery files are public record, so opponents can easily examine lottery details and vote on how the business is run. In some states, it’s even possible to refuse to purchase tickets to government lotteries.
Prescription drug abuse among gamblers
A new study has found a link between problem gambling and prescription drug misuse. People who engage in problem gambling are three times more likely to abuse prescription drugs than the general population. Both addictions share a common trait in that they are characterized by compulsive behaviors, which make it difficult to stop without outside help.
Treatment options for gambling addiction often include a combination of therapies, recovery resources, and supportive psychosocial services. These services may take the form of an inpatient rehab facility or an outpatient treatment program. Treatment plans often include an assessment to determine the appropriate level of care, as well as the resources that will be most helpful.