The chance to win something but also to lose something. Gambling with money gives an adrenaline shot, as it were. But a game where money is the stake, also has great risks. Especially if the amounts increase or you gamble more often than intended. For some, wanting to win becomes an unstoppable urge, leading to serious gambling problems.
What is a gambling addiction?
In short, a gambling addiction is the inability of a person to control his/her gambling behavior despite the negative consequences of this behavior.
Gambling, especially online gambling, is one of the fastest growing addictions in today's society. Gambling addiction is seen as a behavioral addiction. This addiction, in contrast to substance addiction, often does not lead to physical complaints. However, gambling addiction often leads to serious financial problems, problems at work and family and relationship problems. Whether the addict buys a scratch card, bets on sports scores, plays online poker or visits casinos, gambling can have compulsive and uncontrollable consequences.
When are you addicted to gambling?
It is sometimes difficult to estimate whether there really is a gambling addiction. Often the seriousness of a gambling addiction depends on how often people gamble and what the consequences of gambling are.
However, there are several symptoms by which you can recognize a gambling addiction. Problem gambling is characterized by the loss of control over gambling behaviour. In addition, a large part of the addict's life is dominated by gambling because a lot of time and money is spent on it. We have listed the most important characteristics of a gambling addiction below.
- Gambling more often than you planned
- Gamble more than you intended
- Constantly thinking about gamblingLying about gambling or about money and money problems
- Neglecting social contacts
- Absence from work and school
- No control over the gambling
- Failed Attempts to Stop Gambling
Online gambling is gaining popularity
Since October 2021, the online gambling market has been legalized resulting in a large number of gambling advertisements. Thanks to the many advertisements, the chance that (young) people come into contact with gambling is increasing and the chance of problematic gambling behavior also increases. Since the legalization, the number of Dutch visitors to the gambling website has increased significantly. For example, the number of hours played per month has increased by 50% compared to the number of hours spent on online gambling before legalization.
Do you recognize symptoms of a gambling addiction in yourself or in a loved one? Please contact us and sign up for an intake.