What is gambling addiction?
According to Criminal Procedure Law of Turkey, “Gambling defined as a game which is played with the intent to earn money and profit or loss of which depends on chance is a name given for redistribution of possessions without production of winner and loser sides on the basis of venturing intentionally. Contemporarily, it has a wide range of games of chance presented as means for recreation, entertainment and relaxation. Gambling is an addiction which has a good deal of psychological and financial harms to person, family and society.
- It causes psychological problems.
- It boosts the possibility to acquire other addictions more easily. (Alcohol, tobacco etc.)
- A person who becomes selfish and self-seeking is not expected to avoid harming himself and surroundings.
- Because of his gambling passion, one does not fulfill responsibilities towards his family and children.
- One gets involved in complicated relationship networks which can result in physical damages. (In whose power those type of sectors are is unknown and a person is pushed into a world where there is no winner.)
- Along with financial loss, one becomes harmful to himself, his family and society.
- Trust environment in family gets lost.
- It causes financial loss in family and because of these losses psychological, family and social problems emerges. (Divorce, violence in family etc.)
- Relations ventured on for gambling finance reflect family and individuals.
- Unjust earnings becomes valid; gravy becomes ideal of new generations.
- Illegal structures and organizations gain power and property with these ways.
- Understandings fundamental for society such as working, sweat of one’s brow, justice and law lose their significance.
- Social ethics get harm.
- Ambition to win and gain reflects all social relations.
- Peace and trust in society get injured.
To overcome thoughts to gamble, one should…
- Stay away from gambling sites on internet and places where gambling takes place.
- Leave things which remind you gambling. (Horse race programmes, casino ads, lottery tickets etc.)
- Keep your distance from people involved in gambling.
- Abstain from dispute over gambling.
- Keep money which is enough for daily need, not use credit cards and ATM cards out of necessity.
- Change life style and negative habits with positive ones.
- Both a gambler and people who know that s/he is a gambler should not avoid applying addiction treatment and struggling with gambling in such a way.
- Communicate for support and ask for help from trusted family friends.
- Dealing with different things is important and it will be beneficial to focus attention on different activities. (Working at home, sports etc.)
How can I help?
- You can take precaution against gambling and recurrences by setting a limit to money management or taking the charge of financial responsibility.
- You have to be ready for asking for money of the gambler by begging, threatening or accusing and develop a strategy in advance.
- To get a therapy support will help both you and the gambler to cope with problems more easily.
- Gamblers hope to get back their losses at a time. When this does not happen, they try to conceal their behaviours and losses with lies.
- To supply required money for gambling, they can be involved in illegal actions such as fraud, forgery, theft and malversation.
- They put risk on or loss their important relationships, work or education because of gambling.
- A gambler who realizes that s/he will not recover losses experiences severe depressions or even suicide cases.
This pathological addiction has to be treated as a public health problem because the effect of this destructive addiction for family is not limited to an individual. It is possible to treat this disorder. These people should be directed to drug addiction treatment centres because drug addiction treatment models are frequently implemented in the treatment of pathological gambling addiction.
It is possible to accomplish with treatment programmes prepared according to a person. For this, gambling addiction must be first accepted by a gambler as a pathological disorder.
For more information, check the website tbm.org.tr