Tips to Help Combat Problem Gambling

If you’re trying to find a way to deal with problem gambling or want to help out someone close to you, the good news is there are ways to help combat this issue.

How to Help Yourself

The most important thing to do is talk to someone about your problem. Because this is such a complicated issue, it’s common to pull back and actually hide what you’re doing from loved ones. But regardless of how bad you feel about what’s happened, you don’t need to be ashamed. Whether it’s your spouse, a friend or family member, it’s vital to come clean and lay all your cards on the table. Even though you’re probably going to dread doing so, once you do, it will feel like a huge burden has been lifted off your shoulders.

After you finally discuss your problem for the first time, you should look into joining a support group. Because you’ll be around people who are or have been in your exact same situation, you’ll be able to talk freely. Other ways to help yourself combat problem gambling include:

  • Get Help Managing Your Finances: You can curb a lot of gambling urges by getting help with your finances. When you know you have to be accountable to someone else, you won’t be as tempted to skim just a little bit to finance a few hours of gambling.
  • Explore New Activities: Whether it’s working out, painting or rock climbing, get out and try new activities! It may take a little time, but you’ll eventually find at least one healthy hobby that you absolutely love.
  • Avoid Isolation: This isn’t a problem you want to deal with as a lone wolf. Instead of pushing people away, embrace the help and support they want to provide. You may have to swallow your pride, but in the end, you’ll greatly benefit from the support of others.
  • A Mistake Isn’t the End: Slipping up and giving in to an impulse to gamble doesn’t make you a failure. If this does ever happen, get in touch with someone from your support system as soon as possible. Doing so will minimize the damage done by this slip-up and prevent a full return to the cycle of problematic gambling.

How to Help Someone Else

Although it may not be easy, the first thing you need to do is bring this issue up with the person you want to help. While you don’t want to confront or accuse them, you do want to make it clear that you know they have a problem with gambling. You also want to let them know that this doesn’t change how you feel about them, and you know that it’s possible for them to get better.

The most important thing for someone dealing with problem gambling is to be around people who have experience with this issue. Generally, joining a support group is the best option. Doing so will allow your loved one to talk about and explore their problem in an environment where they don’t feel judged. Combined with your support, it’s possible for the person you care about to get on this path and start actually living life again!

eXTReMe Tracker