The Signs of Problem Gambling Posted On

You think there might be signs of problem gambling brewing in your home. You’ve noticed one whose activity occurs behind closed doors or in secrecy. One whose consequences are starting to show up when money goes missing and bills aren’t being paid by your partner.

But you aren’t quite sure.

Or, maybe you’re worried about your child and where their lunch money is going every day. Influenced by television, movies and online, your child is bragging about new possessions and has a constant focus on “winning.”

Or, maybe you’re worried about excessive gambling of your own. How much is too much?

Problem gambling is a widespread issue faced by hundreds of thousands of New York residents every year. Nationwide, millions of people battle the addiction of gambling through common methods such as online gaming, lottery tickets and casino spending.

Like many addictions, gambling is not always recognized immediately, and the consequences often reach a staggering level before any attempts to control it are made.

Signs of Problem Gambling

We understand not everyone wants to ask for support, and diagnosing a gambling problem of your own or of someone else is stressful and can cause fear of embarrassment or shaming and labeling. While we strongly encourage you to seek help as soon as gambling activity seems questionable, understanding recognized warning signs of problem gambling may help you identify whether there is a problem and reinforce your decision to seek assistance.
Concerned about yourself?
When seeking to understand your own potential gambling problem, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you gamble to escape worry, boredom or trouble?
  • Do thoughts of gambling disrupt your sleep?
  • Do arguments, disappointments or frustrations cause you to gamble?
  • Have you ever had self-destructive thoughts because of problems resulting from gambling?
  • Have you noticed a personality change since you began gambling?

Answering questions like these is a good first step in identifying your own gambling problem.

Concerned about others?

While you may not be the one gambling, you can observe changes in the personality and behavior of someone with a gambling addiction. Asking your child, loved one or coworkers questions such as the ones provided below:

  • Does your loved one ever gamble longer than originally planned?
  • Do you hide the rent/mortgage or food money because your loved one gambles it away?
  • Is your child borrowing or stealing money?
  • Does your child have an unusual interest in newspapers, magazines, periodicals and other outlets containing odds and scores?
  • Does your employee or coworker spend an excessive time away from his or her job using the telephone to place bets or spending time reviewing formsheets, racing, sports or stock pages?

Ask the Right Questions – and Get Help

Provided above were just a few examples of the warning signs that may present themselves when a gambling problem exists. For a complete list of problem gambling warning signs, read Know The Odds’ Understanding Problem Gambling e-book. Section 04 provides an extensive list of questions to ask when identifying whether you, your loved one, your child or your coworker have a gambling problem.

If answering these questions leads you to believe a gambling addiction is present, seek immediate help. Visit the Gambling Support Directory to find counseling and support in a New York county near you, or reach out for help through the HOPEline today: 1-877-8-HOPENY.