Gambling is a game of chance or skill where people risk money in order to win money. It can be done in a variety of ways, including scratch cards, fruit machines and betting with friends.
Some people play gambling for fun, with money they can afford to lose, and only occasionally. Others become addicted and need help to stop.
Problem gambling can lead to financial, work and relationship problems that interfere with your life. It can also cause stress and depression.
Symptoms of gambling disorder usually begin as early as adolescence, or later in adulthood. They can be triggered by trauma or social inequality.
Mental health professionals use criteria to diagnose gambling disorders. The newest version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders lists gambling disorder alongside other addictive behaviors, such as alcohol or drug addiction.
Treatment of problem gambling can include therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes. Often, family therapy is important as well.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) can help you to identify unhealthy gambling habits and beliefs. It can also teach you to resist the urge to gamble.
It can help you to understand how your problem gambling affects you and your family, and what options are available to you. It can also teach you coping skills that will help you to manage your problem for the rest of your life.
The social and economic costs of gambling are a serious concern for policy makers. However, these costs can be difficult to measure. Many studies focus on what is called the “gross impact,” and they ignore expenditure substitution effects and other real and transfer effects.