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Evidence-Based Treatment for Compulsive Gamblers

Sports betting isn’t fun anymore. Playing card games with family members is no longer a game. Going to the casino has become a compulsion. You have a glove box full of scratch offs.

You’ve realized that instead of feeding yourself, you’re feeding an addiction.

Compulsive gambling is a serious problem that results in life-altering consequences. Loss of savings, relationships, homes, and even livelihood are all associated with problem gambling.

When the only thing you have left to bet on is yourself, know that help is available.

Support services are available. You can overcome problem gambling.

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What Is Gambling Addiction?

Gambling addiction, called compulsive gambling or gambling disorder, is an uncontrollable compulsive behavior that urges a person to gamble despite the negative consequences. Individuals with a gambling addiction often get to the point where they are willing to risk it all for the thrill of the win.

Many people suffering from a gambling addiction lose everything except their compulsion to gamble. Don’t let it get to that point. If you or a loved one are showing signs of gambling disorder, seek help from an addiction specialist.

What Causes Gambling Disorder?

There are numerous factors that can contribute to gambling disorder, including the need for money combined with the desire for the dopamine high that comes with thrill-seeking. The gambling scene is often depicted as a high-society, exciting, socialite-filled atmosphere that can be alluring to some people.

Signs of problem gambling include poor impulse control, irritability when gambling is not an option or when trying to cut back on gambling, using gambling to reduce feelings of depression or anxiety, attempting to win back lost money (chasing losses), at the casino and lying to friends and family in an attempt to hide gambling.

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What Treatment Options are Available for Gambling Addiction?

There are a multitude of treatments that will help an individual overcome pathological gambling. These include antidepressant therapy and mood stabilizers, individual therapy, family therapy, support groups like Gamblers Anonymous, and different types of psychotherapy such as CBT and DBT.

Those with a serious gambling problem should seek admission into a gambling addiction treatment facility for a comprehensive and holistic treatment plan to help overcome this condition.

Healing Modalities for Gambling at The Heights Treatment

For complete recovery, modalities should focus on the patient holistically. To ensure efficacy, centric therapies that are supported with scientific studies and data.

At The Heights Treatment, our addiction and behavioral health treatment center utilizes both group and individual therapy to empower patients with the coping skills they need to thrive outside of recovery.

Our therapies include:

What Treatment Options are Available for Gambling Addiction?

FAQs About Problem Gambling & Rehab for Gambling

Do you have more questions about problem gambling and treatment options? We’ve answered some of your most frequently asked questions below.

What is the Best Way to Stop My Addiction To Gambling?

There is no one singular therapy that guarantees recovery from problem gambling. Some individuals find that they benefit the most from psychotherapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT), while others find that EMDR, Mindfulness, Art Therapy, or Equine Therapy align more with their recovery goals.

Sometimes self-help isn’t enough. Professional treatment services give you the best chance at lifelong recovery from a gambling addiction.

Is There Medication For Problem Gamblers?

There are several medications approved by the FDA in the treatment of Gambling Addiction and other process addictions. These medications include lithium (a mood stabilizer that is also used to treat bipolar disorder), naltrexone (an opioid agonist(, and other antipsychotic and antidepressant medications.

Do not attempt to treat your gambling addiction by obtaining medication without a prescription. Taking medication that is not prescribed to you can lead to fatal consequences.

Can a Gambling Problem Ruin Your Life?

Compulsive gambling can result in the loss of family relationships, romantic relationships, employment, as well as financial ruin. It is not unheard of for those who suffer from a gambling problem to lose their homes, life savings, and everything else they own while feeding their addiction.

Is Gambling Addiction Treatment Covered By Health Insurance?

Many major insurance companies cover inpatient or outpatient behavioral health care. Your admissions specialist will confirm your eligibility with your insurance provider.

Is Gambling a Mental Illness?

On its own, gambling is not a mental disorder. It is when the gambling becomes compulsive that this behavior becomes concerning. Some people are able to join friends for a poker game, visit a casino, or bet on a race without issue. Many others, however, cannot engage in these activities without becoming consumed by gambling.

What Are The Hidden Symptoms Of Gambling Addiction?

Some signs and symptoms of gambling addiction are easier to identify than others. Because those who suffer from a gambling addiction often know they have a problem and experience feelings of guilt and shame, they may go to great lengths to hide it.

Some of the less obvious signs of a gambling addiction include taking time off work to go to casinos or race tracks, multiple gambling cell phone apps, calls or letters from bill collection agencies, secret credit cards or bank accounts opened, or choosing to spend money to buy scratch-offs and playing the lottery instead of necessities.

If you recognize these hidden signs of gambling addiction in yourself or in a loved one, intervention is key before everything is lost.

How Does Gambling Addiction Affect The Brain?

Gambling can cause chemical reactions in the brain. When gambling produces a win, the brain releases the feel-good chemical dopamine. As the brain and body adjust to this repeated behavior, increased instances of gambling are necessary to achieve the same feeling of pleasure.

Can a Gambling Addiction Kill You?

A gambling problem can indirectly lead to fatal consequences. Those who partake in gambling in unsavory circles may find themselves in dangerous situations trying to satiate their cravings. There is also the potential for someone suffering from a gambling addiction to turn to substances to manage feelings of loss, shame, guilt, or anxiety. This can develop into a fatal addiction.

What Is The Purpose Of Gambling Addiction Treatment?

The purpose of gambling addiction treatment is to help the individual overcome the compulsions that lead to negative behaviors. Gambling addiction isn’t only about treating the symptoms such as visits to the casino or overspending on lottery tickets and compulsive sports betters–it’s about healing the underlying causes of the addiction.

Many people develop addictions as a response to trauma, depressions, feelings of guilt, or anxiety. It is important that individuals seeking addiction treatment undergo therapies that treat them holistically.

What Are Some Of The Side Effects Of Gambling Addiction?

In addition to the potentially devastating financial side effects, termination of relationships, and loss of employment. Those with a gambling disorder are at risk for developing other disorders. It is not uncommon that someone with a gambling addiction either turns to substance abuse to alleviate feelings of shame and guilt. This self-medication can result in a substance use disorder.

Where Can I Find Gambling Addiction Help?

Problem gambling can lead to personal and financial ruin. What once was a night out with friends to the casino can turn into a compulsion and overtake every part of your life. If you or a loved one is suffering from compulsive gambling, help from a gambling treatment center can help.

You CAN heal from a gambling addiction. Contact an admissions specialist today to learn more about our life-changing therapies and find out how we can help you reach new heights.

The Heights Treatment: Overcome Addiction at a Gambling Rehab Center

If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with substance use disorder and need to find treatment, we are here to help.

At The Heights Treatment, we’re committed to helping you overcome drug addiction, alcohol addiction, and co-occurring mental health conditions so that you can lead a more fulfilling, authentic life.

You CAN live a life free of substance abuse. Hope and healing are within reach at The Heights Treatment. Call and speak with our admissions department today to learn more about our life changing addiction treatment services for you or a family member.

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