Gambling is putting something of value, such as money or a prize, at risk with the hope of winning a bigger prize. This can be done in places like casinos, racetracks and sports events, or even through online gambling. It’s a common hobby, and can be fun to do. But it can also lead to problems if it becomes an addiction, straining relationships and causing financial disaster.
Problem gambling may be triggered by mental health issues such as depression or stress. It may also be exacerbated by other factors such as poverty, social inequality and family breakdown. It is important to seek help if you think you have a gambling disorder or know someone who does.
The first step is admitting that you have a problem, which can be very difficult, particularly when it has led to broken relationships and lost income. Seek support from friends and family and attend a group such as Gamblers Anonymous. Consider cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for your gambling problems. It will look at your beliefs about gambling and how they influence your behaviour.
Avoid taking on debt to fund your gambling habit and do not spend more than you can afford to lose. Chasing losses is the most common mistake gamblers make and will almost always lead to Bet Regret, so set a fixed amount of money that you are willing to play with and don’t go over it. Also, never gamble when you’re feeling emotional.