The total gross contribution of the US gambling industry was $137.5 billion and in 2019 it is estimated to hit $511 billion. Gambling is the cause of many men and women falling into an addiction from this legal drug that is readily available at a click of a mouse or around the corner at the nearest betting shop. With this addiction comes debt, destruction of relationships, and in the long run a loss of self.

Even more concerning, is that with gambling being advertised through a number of platforms and the "thrill" outweighing the cons, young people, particularly 14-21-year-olds are becoming addicted to the legal drug.

Below are statistics taken from Additiction.com.

Let’s have a look at the statics

  • Over 80 percent of Americans gamble each year.
  • As many as 750,000 14-21-year-olds have a gambling addiction.
  • It is estimated that 50 percent of those addicted to gambling commit crime to support their addiction.
  • 75 percent of college students have reported gambling, estimated that six percent of college students have a problem with gambling.
  • The risk of developing a gambling addiction more than doubles for young adults in college settings.

Gambling is a real problem and until the government and Corporate 'big cats' take responsibility for the temptation that they are pumping into the veins of unsuspecting addicts this will just become a growing issue.

It’s easy for me to write about the addiction of gambling and the effects it has on a large amount of the population but if you feel you have a problem and need help, below are some tips to support you until you are able to confide in professional help.

Tips on beating gambling addiction

  • “I have a problem” – Admitting you have a problem is the first step to recovery, ‘I have a problem’ maybe four of the hardest words to say but will also be the strongest. Once you can admit you have a problem, you are ready to take the steps to recovery.
  • “I need help” – Imagine standing at the bottom of a mountain staring up at the peak, wondering how the hell you will get up there. No equipment, no knowledge of climbing nor how to succeed. Scary, right? So why would you try to climb the mountain of addiction without the support of people who love and care about you, people who have climbed the mountain and beat the peak?
  • Cut the head of the beast – If you leave cocaine in front of a coke addict, there is a high chance that it won’t be there when you get back. Cut access off of the opportunities of gambling such as blocking sites on your laptop or if you are a member of a casino, speak to an adviser about blocking your membership as you feel you have a problem. Casinos are a gamblers worst nightmare but they have policies in place to protect those who admit to having a problem.
  • Keep Busy – You can take away the problem but you can’t take away the craving that is why it is important to keep busy. Activities such as exercising, taking up a hobby, spending time with family and friends, or taking a walk somewhere beautiful; will help keep the craving at arm's length.
  • Find a Sponsor – There are a number of different support groups that help with beating addiction, you will find that when you get involved in these groups there will be people who are ‘recovered’ addicts these are the people who have gone through the steps to beat their addictions and though it will always be there, they are at the stage where they help others to get to where they are.

As an addict I know the struggle, I know the despair at feeling alone and being dragged into a hole of complete oblivion.

But there is hope, with the right help and the right mindset anything is possible.

Don't miss our page on Facebook!