How to Prevent Gambling Problems


Gambling involves risking something of value, such as money or property, on the outcome of a random event, such as a game of chance or a bet. People gamble on a variety of things, including lotteries, casino games (including video poker and slot machines) or betting with friends. Some forms of gambling are legal, such as horse racing or sports wagering. Some are not, such as illegal drug-related gambling or card games like poker.

There is no one form of gambling that is more addictive than others, and people can develop problems with any type of gambling. There are, however, factors that increase a person’s chances of developing an addiction to gambling. These include a tendency to take risks and to enjoy novelty or complexity, as well as a personality trait related to impulse control problems. In addition, some research suggests that people who are genetically predisposed to thrill-seeking behaviors and impulsivity may be more vulnerable to gambling problems.

Some people with gambling problems may be in denial about their problem and try to hide their behavior from others. They may also be secretive about their gambling and lie to family, friends or employers. They may also become obsessed with winning back the money they have lost, often increasing their bets in a desperate attempt to get it back.

It is important to remember that gambling is not a way to make money, and it is always risky. To help prevent problems, set a budget for how much you can afford to lose and stick to it. It is also a good idea to remove all gambling apps from your phone and laptop so that you are not tempted to play.