Gambling involves wagering something of value, often money, on an event with an uncertain outcome. It can involve playing games of chance, such as roulette or blackjack, or it can be skill-based, such as betting on sports events.
The word gambling comes from the Greek for “to bet.” In its most basic form, it refers to a decision between two or more parties to place a bet on an event that they cannot determine with certainty. In some forms, there is an agreement on the criteria for success and the terms of the reward if the bet is won.
Compulsive gambling is a serious addiction that can lead to financial ruin, strained family relationships and other problems. It’s important to recognize your gambling problem early on and seek treatment.
Addictions are difficult to break but with help and support, it’s possible. Join a support group, such as Gamblers Anonymous, or find a sponsor who has gone through the recovery process.
Set a limit for yourself and stick to it. This will prevent you from chasing losses and can make it easier to stop gambling.
Seek help for an underlying mood disorder, such as depression or stress, that might be making your gambling addiction worse. These conditions can also affect your decision-making skills, making it harder for you to resist the urge to gamble.
Avoid using your money to gamble, including credit cards, ATM cards or online gambling accounts. Instead, keep a small amount of cash on you and use it for entertainment or other purposes.