Addiction is a complex disease, often chronic in nature, which affects the functioning of the brain and body. It also causes serious damage to families, relationships, schools, workplaces and neighborhoods. The most common symptoms of addiction are severe loss of control, continued use despite serious consequences, preoccupation with using, failed attempts to quit, tolerance and withdrawal. Addiction can be effectively prevented, treated and managed by healthcare professionals in combination with family or peer support.*
40 million Americans ages 12 and older—or more than 1 in 7 people—abuse or are addicted to nicotine, alcohol,drugs or other forms of addictions. This is more than the number of Americans with heart conditions (27 million), diabetes (26 million) or cancer (19 million).
Thinking constantly about gambling
Increasing bets to sustain the thrill
Agitation when cutting back on gambling
Gambling as an escape
“Chasing” losses with more gambling
Lying to conceal gambling activity
Financing bets through illegal acts
Jeopardizing significant relationships with family and friends
Relying on others to bail you out
Failing in attempts to control or stop gambling
If you checked three or four items on the list you may be a problem gambler: Checking more than five is considered gambling addiction. Both problem gambling and gambling addiction are serious behavioral health problems that should be addressed with professional help.
People who gamble heavily exhibit anxiety, depression, sleep disturbances, anger, fear and disrupted concentration, as well as lack of self-confidence, lack of interest and problems managing daily living responsibilities.
The unspoken stigma associated with problem gambling or gambling addiction often prevents people and family members from reaching out for help they need.
It is not always obvious when someone is addicted to gambling. Contrary to popular belief, the act of gambling is not restricted to slot machines, cards and casinos. Purchasing a lottery ticket, entering a raffle or making a bet with a friend are also forms of gambling.*
Jewish Family Service of Buffalo & Erie County (JFS) provides confidential, compassionate problem and addiction gambling treatment and counseling for individuals and families.
If you think you may have a problem with gambling, or think someone you know or love may have a problem with gambling… call Jewish Family Services at 883-1914 and ask for gambling recovery services.
Additional Resources The National Counsil on Alcohol & Drug Dependence https://www.ncadd.org
The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse https://www.centeronaddiction.org