Help is just a phone call away:
NATIONAL PROBLEM GAMBLERS HELPLINE • 1-800-522-4700
For most people, playing games of chance is simply a fun, inexpensive and innocent form of entertainment. But sometimes, playing becomes a compulsive behavior. Just as some individuals can become addicted to alcohol or drugs, it’s possible to develop an uncontrollable urge to gamble. The condition is called Problem Gambling, an emotional illness that can remain hidden until the consequences of repeated gambling begin to harm the financial and emotional security of the gambler and his or her relationships with family and friends.
As the stress induced by compulsive gambling increases, the Problem Gambler may seek relief by gambling even more. The result can be a downward spiral of progressively more serious financial and emotional deterioration. Left untreated, the situation has the potential to seriously harm the well-being of both the gambler and his or her family and friends.
Problem gambling can affect men and women of any age, regardless of their financial or social status, religious beliefs or previous gambling history. Although it isn’t possible to predict who will develop a gambling problem, once the problem is identified it can usually be treated successfully.
Problem gambling isn’t always easy to detect because a person with a gambling problem may go to great lengths to hide the problem from others. However, there are several warning signs that may indicate that a gambling problem exists. These signs include:
You don’t have to experience the fear, frustration and guilt of dealing with problem gambling alone. If you or someone you know is suffering from a gambling problem, contact the national PROBLEM GAMBLERS HELPLINE. The helpline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to answer your questions, provide emotional support and offer confidential assistance. Caring and knowledgeable counselors will provide information on treatment options and support groups in your area for both the gambler and those affected by the gambler’s problem.