10 signs of problem gambling

Do you or does someone you know like to bet on games of chance? Here are ten signs and indicators to help you detect when gambling is becoming a problem. They will help you take stock of the situation.

Ten signs of a gambling problem:

Lying

People who have gambling problems generally try to hide it from the people around them. They start lying to their spouses, families, coworkers, and friends.

“Chasing” losses

Some gamblers say they are just trying to win back the money they have lost. They will claim that once they win big, they will stop. Or that they lost because they changed strategies or were not lucky. But when they chase their losses, they end up piling up even more losses, and often debts.

Borrowing money

What do pathological gamblers do when gambling puts them into a financial hole? They borrow—from their family, friends, coworkers, or even strangers, without always admitting the real reason they need the money. They may also have other people pay their gambling debts. They may max out their credit cards or take out a second mortgage.

Always betting more

Like someone who has drugs or alcohol problems, problem gamblers have to up their “dose” of gambling to enjoy it. In other words, they have to bet more and more money to get the kind of rush they want. Unfortunately, the more they bet, the more they lose.

Being obsessed with gambling

When this happens, gamblers cannot stop thinking about the last time they gambled and the next time they will. Any reason is reason enough to go gambling, and they will try any strategy to get the money they need.

Being unable to stop gambling

Many gamblers know they should not gamble so much, and want to quit. They try repeatedly, but cannot fight the urge to play.

Gambling out of need

When trying to cut down on their gambling or stop altogether, some gamblers experience “psychological withdrawal symptoms.” Like someone who has a drug or alcohol problem, they become irritable, impatient, agitated, or tense if they do not get their “dose” of gambling.

Gambling to forget

These gamblers play to distract themselves, forget their problems, and reduce their stress. The game is not just entertainment for them. It is something they do to feel better and escape from whatever is bothering them. And then the gambling itself causes problems.

Stealing or committing fraud to gamble

Despite their losses, problem gamblers continueplaying, and their finances keep getting worse. Borrowing money from family, friends, and coworkers is no longer enough. To fund their habit and try to solve their problems by hitting the jackpot, they turn to misdeeds and crime.

Gambling because it is the most important thing in the world

Gamblers can become so addicted to the game and the hope to win it all back that they fall into ever-deeper financial, social, and professional trouble. Everything about their lives gradually revolves around and is affected by gambling. It puts their families, friendships, studies, jobs, and future career prospects at risk.