Gambling – What Causes Someone to Gamble?

Basically, gambling involves putting something of value, usually money, at risk on an event with some element of chance. It can be done through several means such as dice, cards, sports events, horse races, slot machines and instant scratch tickets. While there are many benefits to gambling, it can also be harmful and even addictive. This is why it’s important to understand what causes someone to gamble and to seek help if needed.

Gambling is considered a social activity and as such it provides people with an opportunity to interact with others in a fun and entertaining way. It is a popular activity amongst the youth and can be found in casinos, clubs, bars and online. There are many side effects to gambling but some of the most notable ones include:

In what is viewed as a landmark decision, in May this year the American Psychiatric Association moved pathological gambling from the “impulse control disorders” category to the addictions chapter in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). This change signals a new understanding of the biology underlying addiction and is expected to have significant implications for diagnosis and treatment of this problem.

In order to prevent a loved one’s gambling from becoming a problem, you can set boundaries in managing their money. You can make sure that their entertainment budget is separate from the bills and credit card limit. Additionally, you can encourage them to find healthier ways of relieving unpleasant feelings and socializing, such as exercising or attending a support group.