Name: Gina Ly
From: Auburn, Washington
How to Combat Gambling Addictions
How to Combat Gambling
I would like to raise
awareness to the causes of gambling addictions. Personally, I have
had family members who have suffered from a gambling addiction.
Although this addiction does not cause instant issues such as mental
or physical damage but it will lead to severe consequences. For
example, people who are addicted to gambling developed this disorder
over time because this kind of addiction tends to hook the individual
into an endless cycle without an escape plan. I have seen family
members start out playing on social occasions which has led to daily
trips to the casino. I have also seen individuals start gambling with
a small amount of money which led to them losing their entire
paycheck and homes. Gambling addiction is a prevalent issue in our
society and we can only solve this issue by educating people with the
academic findings and possible resources to dealing with this
addiction as soon as possible.
Some consequences of a
gambling addiction causes disruptions in major areas of life which
includes psychological, physical, social, and vocational. The
National Council on Problem Gambling notes the following statistics:
15 percent of Americans
gamble at least once per week.
Approximately two to three
percent of Americans meet the criteria for problem gambling. That’s
around 6 million adults and about a half million teens.
Youth risk developing a
gambling problem at a rate of about two to three times that of
adults, and approximately 6 percent of college students in America
have a gambling problem.
About 40 percent of people
with a gambling problem started gambling before the age of 17.
Nevada has the highest
prevalence of problem gambling in the country, at about 6.4 percent.
consequences of gambling addiction for the individual and society can
be related and identified to certain risk factors. These risk factors
include and not limited to:
Living in a single-parent
Having a below-median
Early initiation – starting
before 8th grade
Playing sports at school
Experiencing problems at home
Having low-self esteem
In addition, the Mayo Clinic
has identified more risk factors for the individual and society.
These gambling problem risk factors include and are not limited to:
Behavior or mood disorders
Age – the problem develops
more frequently in young people
Family influence – whether
parents and other close adults were gamblers
such as high level of being competitive, or easily bored (Frazier,
A gambling addiction can be
difficult to control and recover from. There are many consequences
for the individual and society as a whole because this addiction
ruins relationships, affects work performance, and leads to mental
health issues such as manic depression, anger, and mood swings. The
danger is that these consequences gradually increase over time for
the individual and society if there’s not enough awareness and
prevention strategies implemented.
as a society and as individuals can only remedy the crisis if we put
in a collaborative effort. Fortunately, there is help available such
as many books and research written on the subject of gambling
addictions. Furthermore, there are also organizations like Gamblers
Anonymous that offer a support system to individuals who are trying
to change their habits. Individually, a person who is suffering from
gambling, may want to consider preventive strategies from accessing
gambling resources. One of the ways they can do this is by seeking
safety nets such as psychological counseling, family and friends who
can catch them in case they are falling off the wagon. Individuals
who suffer from gambling addiction are not able to sleep, have an
inability to cut back or control spending, hiding or lying about what
activities they are participating on a daily basis and have an
inability to function properly at work and everyday life. With the
proper support network from society such as the National Helpline,
individuals can seek help in every state of the United States of
America. Thus, an individual who is struggling with a gambling
addiction must be willing to rely on society and society must also be
willing to provide that safety net for support.