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Gambling is the act of betting money or something of value on a random event. When you win, you get a prize. However, if you lose, you suffer losses.

Often, people gamble to socialize, relax, or alleviate stress. But for some, it becomes more than a mere pastime. Increasing amounts of gambling can be detrimental to a person’s well-being. Getting professional help is a good way to deal with a gambling addiction.

Several therapies can be used to treat gambling disorders, including family therapy, career counseling, and psychodynamic therapy. Problem gamblers are encouraged to join a support group. These can include Gamblers Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous.

Many problem gamblers have a co-occurring mental health condition. They may have an obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

Problem gambling also has a negative impact on relationships. Family members may feel ashamed or be unable to control the behavior of the gambling addict. In addition, the gambling addict may steal or borrow money to fund his or her activities.

Some studies suggest that women are more vulnerable to problem gambling than men. This may be due to factors such as age, gender, and social inequality.

If you’re concerned about someone you love, don’t hesitate to ask for help. You can call the National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

People with gambling disorders often have emotional issues that make it difficult to stop their behavior. There are several treatment options available, and some are free.