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Gambling addictions are no laughing matter and can become severe and debilitating. Many biases surround the online betting world and gambling addictions. Still, it is essential to remember that not everyone becomes addicted to betting.

It can become easy to blame the casinos when someone develops a gambling addiction. However, the gambling industry has legislation to ensure that they assist those with this issue. The best casino online in Sweden offers support to individuals that develop a problem. 

Together with our expert, Carlos Norberg, we investigate problem gambling and why some people become addicted.

What Type of Person Is More Likely to Develop a Gambling Addiction?

A gambling addiction or compulsive gambling is an addictive disorder referring to the compulsion to bet and is recognized as such by the World Health Organization. This can be an extremely debilitating disorder if not dealt with quickly and responsibly.

In Sweden, the focus is on preventing problem betting before it occurs. To do this, we need to understand what types of people are more likely to develop an addiction. A recent study has shown the following individuals to be more at risk of compulsive gambling: 

  • Men
  • Those who are unemployed
  • Individuals between the ages of 25 - 34
  • People with a history of mental health issues

Signs of Someone Who Has a Gambling Addiction

As with all addictions, early intervention has shown the best results. If you suspect someone may have a problem, there are questionnaires to help get a gambling addiction diagnosed. Let’s take a look at some of the signs you can expect to see if someone has a gambling addiction.

  • The individual needs to gamble all the time.
  • They’re constantly looking for ways to get more money to spend on betting.
  • The person needs to increase the bettings amounts to get the same enjoyment.
  • They feel restless and irritable when not betting.
  • The individual becomes more withdrawn and secretive.

Why Do Some People Become Addicted?

Like alcoholism and drug dependencies, gambling can become an addiction when the compulsion to gamble can no longer be controlled by the individual and they become reckless. 

These types of compulsions stem from two different pathways in the brain. These pathways are referred to as the ‘liking’ pathway and the ‘wanting’ pathway in layman’s terms. Liking is spontaneous, whereas wanting is a more profound desire. An addiction occurs when these two pathways become rewired, and you feel compelled to do something more often. Unfortunately, when an addiction forms, the individual needs to engage in more of that activity to receive the same amount of satisfaction from the activity.

Getting a gambling addiction treated includes, among other things, attending addiction support groups, psychological help to work through issues and potentially a life coach to help set up realistic financial goals and budgets. The best treatment for any addiction is prevention.

What Should You Do If You or Someone Else Develops a Gambling Addiction?

If you are concerned that you or someone else may be developing a gambling problem, then you need to address it as soon as possible. The longer you wait to act, the more severe the situation can become. However, realizing that a problem exists is usually the most challenging step. 

There are many forms of support for gambling addictions to promote safer gambling. Support centres are available to assist individuals who have a problem or worry that they may be at a higher risk for developing an addiction. Make sure to reach out to professionals when you become concerned, as they will best guide you to a solution to the problem.

There are a few things you or your loved one can do to help manage your addiction.

Dos:

  • Immediately pay essential bills after receiving your salary.
  • Spend more time with supportive family and friends that do not gamble.
  • Deal with debt, and have a realistic and achievable plan in place to repay it.
  • Have a spending limit whenever you are betting, and never go over it.

Don’ts:

  • View betting as a source of income.
  • Bottle up negative emotions towards your betting; talk to someone and seek help when needed.
  • Take credit or debit cards when going gambling.

Final Thoughts

The risk of developing a gambling addiction is real, but as long as punters partake in responsible gambling, they can enjoy their games without risking addiction. Be accountable and only bet what you can afford to lose, and seek help if you are concerned about a potential addiction.