Despite the fact that gambling in casinos is meant to be a form of entertainment first and foremost, with the thrill and excitement of the chances of winning substantial sums of money just the icing on the cake, there is a dark side to it all. This is the problem of addiction.
Addiction to gambling can become very strong over time and a person in its grip tends to spiral out of control when nothing is done to prevent it. This form of gambling is also referred to as compulsive gambling as the sufferer often behaves erratically with what can lead to serious social and personal consequences.
Once a person is in the grip of gambling addiction, their enjoyment of the pastime is eliminated and they descend into a lifestyle where they merely live to gamble. This can sometimes be seen outside the real world casinos in places like Las Vegas where well dressed and seemingly well-to-do people frequent bus shelters and other public places and accost passers by asking them for money so they can try and win back what they’ve lost.
This is a sad state to find oneself in, as it is possible that the grip of gambling addiction has become so strong as to have caused the loss of everything including friends, family and home.
To prevent such a sad outcome, there are several bodies that are available to help people with gambling addiction, or the people closest to them to come to terms with their problem and to help them break free of it before any lasting damage is done.
There are two main categories of gambling addiction. Compulsive gambling produces the urge to gamble in people despite the desire to stop or the potential negative consequences associated with it. This form is easier to treat as the person is aware of their problem and is therefore more likely to try to get treatment for it. The second type is pathological gambling and is a recognized medical disorder. In this case the person often does not realize they even have a problem and are therefore unlikely to seek help. In such a case it requires someone close to them to seek professional help for them.
In either case, early detection of the warning signs can prevent a person from descending into the turmoil associated with gambling addiction.