The disorder of gambling activity involves gambling for long periods that can have an adverse effect on your health. It is known as addiction and will cause problems and distress. For many people gambling can become like a regular addiction similar to alcohol and the will need their shot to fix it. Since there are no physical symptoms, there is no way that you can tell whether you are addicted to it or not. Then there are other defensive measures that the addict takes to hide it from the family. The first thing in treating addiction is to identify it and there is only one person who can identify that there is an addiction, and that is the person himself. However, the way you approach it is completely different. There are some steps that you will have to take to assess a gambling addict and without knowing his routine, it is impossible to get an insight into what you are doing. So the best for clinicians to understand is the popular trends along with the history of the client. This is will give them a picture of their situation and help in formulating plans.
What clinicians need to know?
Over the years gambling has changed a lot and in the recent past, the introduction of the online casino has been one of the significant developments in the industry. More youth are drawn to the gambling activities in general as it appeals to them. The games are better programmed and use the graphics intelligently. This not only caters to the gambling crowd but also the gaming crowd. On top of that, some rewards and bonuses entice a player. These things have to be kept in mind as to how the gambling industry uses the reward system of the brain to attract the player and how the addiction is similar to that of the alcohol where you will get restless if not provided.
The first thing for such a person to do is to identify the problem and see if anyone else has the same problem. He can join a self-help group. There needs to be an awareness of the problem, not just with the adults but especially with the kids. If the habit is within limits then its fine, but for that to happen, there have to be some restrictions. Take control of the finances and wherever necessary trim the money if your partner is ready to do that. This is a habit that can be assessed slowly not all of a sudden. So make sure that you have a proper plan. There is no need for a knee-jerk reaction or reach sharply but approach the person with kindness and listen to what they have to say. There is no immediate solution but it is a slow process so be ready for that. Denial is one such thing that you should never indulge in.
Gambling disorder is similar to any other disorder except to the fact that there are no physical symptoms and there is no way to know how deep the problem is. This can however be understood by proper understanding.