Gambling Addictions

Compulsive gambling is the uncontrollable urge to keep gambling despite the consequences it may have on your life. Gambling can stimulate your brain in the same way that drugs and alcohol do. People who are addicted to gambling keep gambling regardless of the financial or personal costs.

Symptoms of a gambling addiction may include:

  • Being preoccupied with gambling, such as constantly planning how to get more gambling money
  • Needing to gamble with increasing amounts of money to get the same thrill
  • Trying to control, cut back or stop gambling, without success
  • Feeling restless or irritable when you try to cut down on gambling
  • Gambling to escape problems or relieve feelings of helplessness, guilt, anxiety or depression
  • Trying to get back lost money by gambling more (chasing losses)
  • Lying to family members or others to hide the extent of your gambling
  • Jeopardizing or losing important relationships, a job, or school or work opportunities because of gambling
  • Resorting to theft or fraud to get gambling money
  • Asking others to bail you out of financial trouble because you gambled money away

Gambling Addiction Resources

National Resources

Mayo Clinic
Information on diagnosis, treatment options and other information for gambling addiction.

National Council on Problem Gambling
Advocacy, information and resources to support individuals struggling with problem gambling.

Smart Recovery
Abstinence-oriented and offers resources as well as free mutual support groups.