Gambling Addiction Development and How to Prevent It
First, we must emphasize the common characteristics and symptoms that can be observed in a person addicted to various games or, in other words, what aspects of person's behavior to consider if you think they may be involved in that danger.
Now, the majority of patients who receive anti-gambling treatment are, basically, slot machines users. Many primary studies emphasize that they are 35-45 years old men. However, today, we can see a sudden change in this trend. That is because of the online games development, which has brought a different profile of an average player. They are young Internet users with university studies and with more resources. Also, in this case, a gambling disorder evolves rather slow.
About the new image of the gambler, the age of when this specific addiction develops descended considerably and gambling can be observed in adolescents' cases. Anyone with the possibility of having access to the online world can develop this type of addiction.
Although gambling doesn't produce the same physical damage as drug addiction, the social and economic consequences are considerable, that makes it one of the most destructive addictions for the person and their environment. Once the addiction is developed, it becomes unstoppable.
Gambling — General Profile
But, how does a gambling addiction develop? It is divided into 3 phases, with the first one generating the most attraction and consequences for the future addict.
At first, the player goes through a period of luck where frequent episodes of profit occur. These lead to a greater excitement about the game, with which the individual begins to bet more frequently. They believe in their unique luck and exceptionalism.
An excessively optimistic attitude, which is a characteristic of the pathological player's style, leads them to increase the amount of money they bet during the game. And, as the amount of money goes bigger, gamers will experience heavy losses that are difficult to tolerate. That is when people begin to play with the purpose — not only to win but to recover the lost.
As a rule, at this phase, the person has already got a large debt, and there is a desire to return the money quickly. There is the suffering provided by the alienation of family and friends, a negative reputation in the community, social rejection, and the irrepressible desire to recover the positive feelings.
In the end, any person with a gambling problem ( even if they win at the beginning) will end up losing while going through these 3 phases.
People who suffer from gambling and require rehabilitation need to learn how to manage their behavior appropriately. To avoid relapse, they must "self-prohibit" going through gambling sites or online games. It is always conducted with the help of a proper psychological treatment that allows the patient to identify the subjective discomfort underlying gambling addiction. This specific kind of disease is quite challenging to control, especially with the difficulty of avoiding access to Internet games and online arenas, in particular. Such a condition, in many cases, requires hospitalization to a specialized clinic. It must be taken into account that, without any preparation and consulting with a patient, curing the gambling won't be sufficient.