Gambling addiction is an addiction that is subversive and often goes unnoticed by an individual’s loved ones for a great deal of time. This is due to that fact that gambling addiction will not often manifest any acute deteriorative physical signs or changes in the individual like the effects of physical chemically induced dependencies (i.e. Opiates such as Heroin, Opioids like Oxycodone, Alcohol, etc.). However, the effects are just as harmful and, in some ways, more difficult to treat. This is largely due to the fact that gambling is so prevalent as an acceptable form of entertainment in western society it often flies under the radar of even the individual until consequences begin to emerge. Quite often these consequences tend to manifest on behavioral, emotional, financial and or health levels.
Gambling addiction does share commonalities with chemical addiction in terms of the potential underlying causes. These are many and can be a potential reason or multiple reasons for why the individual now struggles with addiction. Quite often as with many individuals living with addiction there is underlying past trauma, ongoing mental health and/or life events which predispose them to developing an addiction. These can be events that maybe obvious such as the death of a loved one, divorce, job loss, recent break-up or a past history of physical, emotional or sexual abuse which loved ones may not be aware of. These events or past circumstances can often develop into mental health issues characterized by feelings of depression and anxiety. In order to cope with the underlying event(s) the individual turns to gambling in order to feel a false sense of self, control and joy in their lives which they have lost. In order to restore the individual’s true sense of self and control giving into treatment is the only way to see through to a much more real, happy, life experience.
In order to address a Gambling addiction intervention may be necessary as the individual may not feel they have an addiction due gambling’s widely accepted practice in society. However, it is an important to note that if the individual does not feel they have an addiction to not force them into treatment. The first step is that their loved ones express their concerns with the individual over their addiction. It is important not to place blame during this conversation and that it comes from a place of concern not condemnation. Once the individual is able to realize that they desire help to break away from their current lifestyle that treatment is sought. At Addiction Rehab Toronto we will work alongside the individual to delve into the causes surrounding their addiction and develop a treatment plan tailor made for their new lifestyle. We use and provide a variety of tools to help our clients and their loved ones work through the individual’s addiction and begin the healing process of the harm which resulted from the addiction itself. There is hope and freedom for the individual through treatment.