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Gambling is a form of risk taking where you make a bet on a chance game. You could be wagering on a sporting event, playing a game of poker or betting on horse racing. The aim is to win something of value.

However, gambling is not always healthy. Research suggests that pathological gambling can be linked to health problems. It is therefore important to be aware of its risks and treat it accordingly.

If you think you might have a problem, you can visit a doctor or a support group. Counseling is free and confidential. Your family and friends can also help you.

Several types of therapy are used to treat gambling disorders. Cognitive-behavioral therapy, for example, focuses on changing unhealthy behaviors. Medications may also be used. Other forms of therapy include marriage counseling and family therapy.

Problem gamblers often have a high rate of suicidal ideation and depression. Treatment may include counseling, medications, and lifestyle changes.

The National Helpline is a good place to start. Call 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

There are many support groups available. Joining a peer support group is a great way to deal with a gambling addiction. Volunteering or joining an education program is another option.

You should keep a limited amount of money on hand. Avoid using credit cards. Make sure your bank makes automatic payments. This will ensure that you stay accountable for your spending.

When you are ready to quit, you need to take some important steps. First, you need to identify and prevent the urge to gamble.