Gambling addiction, also known as pathological gambling and compulsive gambling, is an impulse-control disorder that causes negative consequences in social, occupational, and interpersonal functioning. The estimates are that 2.5 million adults suffer from gambling addiction in the US, and another 15 million are at risk of becoming problem gamblers.

Compulsive gamblers can’t control the impulse to gamble, even if it is making them unable to meet their financial obligations. They will keep gambling even though they know the odds are against them and they can’t afford to lose.

Underlying causes of compulsive gambling

Gambling addiction is often coupled with other behavioral health or issues such as substance abuse, depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or bipolar disorder. To overcome compulsive gambling problems, at Scottsdale Mental Health & Wellness Institute, we address these and any other underlying causes as well.

Lives are destroyed

Many people with a pathological gambling disorder are often unaware or in denial of having this serious problem. Compulsive and habitual gambling can destroy a person’s life.

Pathological gambling behavior can, and often does for many people, cause personal, financial, and legal problems. Bankruptcy, divorce, loss of employment, and even prison time can also be the result. The stress caused by out of control gambling can also cause health problems and lead to heart attacks in people at risk for them.

Even if a person only gambles occasionally, the behavior often progresses from occasional to habitual gambling. For a lot of people suffering from this addiction disorder, they will only admit they have a problem when they hit rock bottom.

Scottsdale Mental Health & Wellness can help

If your life seems to be getting out of control due to gambling, even if it is only occasional, don’t hesitate to at least have a consultation with an SMHWI behavioral health professional. Compulsive gambling is treatable. Recognizing that you have a problem is the first step towards getting your life back on track.