Problem Gambling Addiction Help
There are many professionals who offer gambling addiction help. These people can help you by identifying the problem, offering you solutions, and ultimately helping you to overcome the problem. Some of these professionals work through their gamblers therapy organizations. Others have created private practices that treat problem gamblers. Still others are government contractors who provide counseling to government employees and other problem gamblers.
There are many steps a gambler must take to become an expert in recovery from addiction. The first step is admitting you have a problem. This may not be easy to do for many problem gamblers because the shame and embarrassment of gambling addiction keep many people from acknowledging they have gambling problems. But it is a necessity if you want to succeed with the next step-based programs.
After admitting you have gambling problems, the next step is to decide which treatment program will work best for you. Some programs involve long-term planning and intensive therapy. Other programs are shorter term and are focused on behavioral modification. Each type of step-based programs will require different diagnostic criteria.
The most common diagnostic criterion used by professionals when treating problem gamblers is a mental disorder. In order to be categorized as having a gambling problem, a person must exhibit repeated acts of pathological gambling. A person does not have to have repeated acts of pathological gambling in order to meet the diagnostic criteria for gambling problems. For example, if you win one slot machine every time you pay and get three prizes, this is considered pathological gambling. It does not matter how many times you win or what the prize is if you are still exhibiting these symptoms after you win.
Another set of diagnostic criteria used in diagnosing problem gambling is obsessive-compulsive disorder. Someone with this disorder must have repeated thoughts and behaviors that are geared towards keeping them from acting on their impulses. For example, a gambler could continuously think about whether or not they will lose all the money on a given slot machine. If this is an extreme form of obsession, the individual may meet other diagnostic criteria such as bipolar disorder or post traumatic stress disorder.
Problem gamblers can be difficult to treat, especially in cases where the gambling problem is an addiction. The problem gambler may not respond to typical forms of treatment such as cognitive behavior therapy. These individuals may require specialized gambling help in order to overcome their addiction and return to a normal functioning life. There are a number of options available for problem gamblers. If the gambling addict is not willing to seek professional help, there are a number of resources available to adults with gambling issues.
Gambling addicts can use many of the same resources that are available to those with an addiction to alcohol or drugs. Gambling addiction help is available in a number of online publications that address this type of addiction, including several self help programs for pathological gamblers. Many of these sites are supported by professional gamblers who have overcome the problem themselves. Gamblers who are serious about quitting can find these online support groups to be a valuable asset in their efforts to break their addiction.
Problem gamblers do not necessarily meet all of the diagnostic criteria for gambling addiction. However, many of the resources and techniques that are used to help people overcome problem gambling addiction meet the requirements for meeting diagnostic criteria for this condition. This is a very real and growing problem that is affecting a significant portion of the adult population and must be addressed.