Gambling is a widespread and lucrative activity. It is not, however, without risk. In fact, gambling is as risky as alcohol or drug abuse. People who become addicted to gambling may not be able to control it. In addition, the amount of money wagered on gambling can exceed $10 trillion every year. In the United States, lottery games are the most popular form of gambling. In Europe, organized football pools are available in nearly every country, as well as many South American, African and Asian countries. Most countries offer state-licensed betting on sporting events.
People who are suffering from gambling addictions should begin by strengthening their social and family support networks. To build these networks, it may be beneficial to attend a gambling education class, volunteer at a charity or nonprofit organization, or join a peer support group. Gamblers Anonymous, for example, is a 12-step program that mimics Alcoholics Anonymous. Members are required to identify a sponsor, a former gambler who can give them support and advice.
Despite the stigma of admitting that you have a gambling problem, it is important to recognize that you are not alone. Countless people have overcome gambling addictions and are living the life you deserve. You may even be one of them. And even if you do have a gambling problem, you don’t have to live with it forever. With help, you can stop losing money and regain control of your life. If you want to stop the rut that you’re in, consider visiting a gambling treatment facility.