Why do I gamble when I’m depressed? If you love gambling, you may have pondered on certain questions. When is the best time to gamble? How can I hit the jackpot? Gambling can become an addiction because most of the people who resort to it are desperate to make quick money or satisfy their emotional needs. When you gamble, your body releases feel-good hormones that allow you to enjoy a rush of passion. For that moment, you’ll forget all your problems and everything that makes you sad.
Depression and Gambling (Why do I Gamble When I’m Depressed)
Studies on this subject shows that people who have gambling problems are possibly going to get depressed more frequently than those who don’t. The study also found that such people are likely going to experience chronic psychological distress compared to those who don’t have gambling problems.
The link between your mood and gambling isn’t one way alone. Many gamblers gamble because they are depressed. They may decide to gamble as an escape and gambling can also lead to depression or make things worse in the long run. If you have a gambling problem and you’re also dealing with depression, you have to find a solution. You can learn the best strategies to apply and support models that can help you deal with it.
Gambling Addiction – Problem Gambling
Many people who love gambling do it for fun. When you see gambling as harmless fun even though it is slowly becoming an addiction, this is when it becomes a problem. The new addictive or compulsive behavior is known as Problem Gambling.
At this stage, the affected individual will do anything to get his/her fix by gambling even when they no longer have money to spare. Gambling addiction is usually progressive. They can have several social, physical, and psychological implications on a person. It has been classified as an impulse-control condition by health experts.
There are many negative impacts that problem gambling can have on an individual. The chief of them is that problem gambling can harm you physically and psychologically while also ruining your relationship with others. People with a gambling addiction can experience migraines, intestinal disorders, depression, and other conditions triggered by anxiety. The same way other kinds of addiction affects the body, the adverse effects of gambling problems trigger feelings of helplessness and dependency.
Depression as an Effects of Gambling Addiction
The rate at which gambling addiction happens in the United States has risen astronomically in recent years. In 2012, more than 5.77 million people were living with gambling disorders in the United States alone. Now, health-care professionals diagnosed more than 10 million Americans as compulsive gamblers. Due to how harmful the effects of gambling addiction are, it has been classified as a significant health problem in many countries.
Anyone with a gambling addiction will never have rest until he/she gambles just like alcohol addicts don’t feel good until they get a drink. This behavior can alter a person’s mind. The more they gamble, the more they’ll need to gamble and the higher risks they’ll have to take.
The same can be said when it comes to substance addiction. When the body begins to develop tolerance, the individual might need to increase their intake of the substance. They do this to feel the same high that got them hooked in the first place. Most times, they’ll chase their losses by gambling. They believe that if they play frequently they’ll be able to win back the money they have lost from gambling. Thus, this creates a vicious circle. The affected person suffers an increased level of craving for the activity that they believe heals their depression. Recovery becomes impeded and slowly, impossible.
Compulsive Gambling as a Fix to Depression
Anytime the compulsive gambler doesn’t gamble, they start struggling with feelings of shame, hopelessness, and depression. Still, this doesn’t stop them from trying again and again until they eventually lose everything. They can sell their belongings, request personal loans, and go as far as stealing just to get money to gamble. At that time, they deem anyone who offers to help them as the enemy that needs to be stopped.
Note that the rate at which an individual gambles, not the amount of money they have lost while gambling, is what determines whether or not they have a gambling problem. Gambling occasionally is not harmful. You can gamble when you’re out with friends, during your off days, or over some weekends. It doesn’t matter if you lose or win as long as you’re in full control of the situation.
Gambling becomes a problem when you have no control. You cannot bring yourself to stop even when you’re on a never-ending losing streak. When you start feeling this way, ask yourself questions like why do I gamble when I’m depressed? Is gambling worth my time, money, and relationships? How can I help myself?
Tackling Gambling and Depression
Gambling is easily accessible and widespread. The easy availability of land-based gambling outlets, as well as the rise in online gambling platforms, haven’t helped people with Problem Gambling. Instead, they have caused a substantial rise in the prevalence of gambling problems. The increase in the prevalence of gambling problems has become a major problem because of the economic, social, and health costs associated with it.
To curb the problem of gambling addiction, there have been calls for more awareness and the implementation of appropriate legislation to ensure that gambling providers create the right schemes to reduce the problem. People shouldn’t simply be allowed to keep gambling because they can afford it.
Government Battles Problem Gambling
In the United States, laws task gambling houses to develop the right policies and necessary programs in addressing gambling addiction. There should be more research on Problem Gambling as a result of depression and depression as a contributor to problem gambling. The appropriate treatment protocols should be made public. People should be taught about how to prevent Problem Gambling.
Right now, the most common way to help yourself is to register for self-exclusion. Temporarily place a self-ban on yourself from online gambling. Also, avoid land-based casino. This can last for up to six months and longer. During this period, no legal gambling establishment will allow you to use their services no matter how hard you try.
You can spend your time keeping busy with physical and social activities like working out, visiting friends, watching movies, etc. Find happiness in other places that have nothing to do with gambling. Just make sure you don’t switch from gambling addiction to another type of addiction. It’s easy to go from gambling to overeating, overdrinking, or using social media too much.
Gambling Addiction? Find out!
Undergo a set of self-tests to diagnose the problem without visiting a professional. That is if you suspect that you may have a gambling problem. These tests can be found on the internet for free. Consult a professional if you’re not satisfied with the result. A professional will decide if you will need a formal evaluation regarding your gambling problem.
A professional will provide a detailed treatment plan. The treatment plan developed and any form of assistance rendered will possibly address different aspects of the individual’s life. To determine if you’re a Problem Gambler, ask yourself some of these questions:
- Do I always think of gambling?
- Do I always gamble when I feel stressed, tired, or depressed?
- Is my love for gambling affecting my relationship with others?
- Is gambling costing me more money than I can spare?
- Can I stop gambling permanently whenever I choose?
Why do I gamble when I am depressed? Gambling and depression are two-way problems that can quickly become related if care isn’t taken. Never use gambling as an escape from your emotional problems. It doesn’t matter how satisfying or fulfilling it might be. Using gambling to cope with depression will only lead to Problem Gambling and all the issues that come with it.