Problem Gambling and Mental Health Posted On
When many of us think about problem gambling, we are often drawn to the one obvious negative consequence – financial struggle. It’s time we start talking about the elephant in the room – the connection between mental health and problem gambling. No one is really sure which came first, but there are strong connections between problem gambling and mental health disorders such as anxiety, depression, bi-polar disorder, and personality disorders.
In fact, one in five problem gamblers attempts suicide. That number is two times higher for problem gambling than it is for any other addiction.
It’s time we have the conversation about problem gambling and mental health to prevent any more negative consequences associated with either disorder.
Call to Action
If you are a mental health provider, start screening clients for problem gambling and know what resources are available in your area for those struggling with gambling.
If you are in recovery from gambling disorder, be sure to take care of your mental health by participating in healthy activities that help you relieve stress, get support from your peers and family when stressed, and be sure to eat healthy and get enough sleep.
If you, or someone you love, is struggling with gambling, be sure to speak up and reach out now for the support you need. Support can come from many places: loved ones, support groups, and counselors, are just a few possibilities.
Resources for Problem Gambling and Mental Health
If you are struggling with any mental health issues, especially thoughts of suicide, call the National Lifeline at 1 (800) 273-8255. If you’re struggling with your gambling, or someone else’s gambling, call the NYS HOPEline for additional support and resources. Trained counselors are waiting to answer your call or text. No one should feel that they are alone in their struggle with problem gambling or mental health.
Thank you for this article. I will share to help those who need it. Good job o the writing.