How to Deal with a Gambling Problem

A gambling problem usually occurs when a person over indulges in gambling, ending up being indebted and having dysfunctional relationships with loved ones.

First of all, Gambling is addictive. The risk and the winning can have a psychological effect on a person, making him unreasonable and irrational.

The first step to solving a gambling problem is acknowledging it. Gamblers Anonymous have the following set of questions to test if you indeed have gambling problems.

1. Did you ever lose time from work or school due to gambling?

2. Has gambling ever made your home life unhappy?

3. Did gambling affect your reputation?

4. Have you ever felt remorse after gambling?

5. Did you ever gamble to get money with which to pay debts or otherwise solve financial difficulties?

6. Did gambling cause a decrease in your ambition or efficiency?

7. After losing did you feel you must return as soon as possible and win back your losses?

8. After a win did you have a strong urge to return and win more?

9. Did you often gamble until your last dollar was gone?

10. Did you ever borrow to finance your gambling?

11. Have you ever sold anything to finance gambling?

12. Were you reluctant to use “gambling money” for normal expenditures?

13. Did gambling make you careless of the welfare of yourself or your family?

14. Did you ever gamble longer than you had planned?

15. Have you ever gambled to escape worry or trouble?

16. Have you ever committed, or considered committing, an illegal act to finance gambling?

17. Did gambling cause you to have difficulty in sleeping?

18. Do arguments, disappointments or frustrations create within you an urge to gamble?

19. Did you ever have an urge to celebrate any good fortune by a few hours of gambling?

20. Have you ever considered self destruction or suicide as a result of your gambling?

A problem Gambler would answer Yes to at least seven of these questions.

If you are indeed a problem gambler, the following tips should help you out of your gambling ditch:

* Never take credit cards or an ATM card with you when you gamble, just take the amount that you intend to spend that day.
* Limit the time you gamble.
* Remember, there are more chances of you losing than winning.
* When you win, keep the money and have an agreement with yourself not to use it.
* When you run out of money, give up, never borrow cash for gambling.
* Never hesitate to ask help from a buddy. Bring a gambling buddy who’s not addicted and ask him to keep you in check.

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