Gambling is an activity where people take part in a game by placing something of monetary value at risk in order to win money or a prize. There are many different forms of gambling - from scratch cards, lotteries and bingo, to betting on sports or events or playing casino games and arcade machines. It is estimated that over seven billion pounds a year is spent on these activities.
Gambling is not necessarily a bad thing, but it can be risky and, in some cases, can develop into a compulsive habit that people struggle to give up. Even if the outcome is not always positive, some people will be so addicted that they end up driving themselves towards a financial crisis and possibly even poor health and well-being. But, with the right treatment, it is possible to prevent a gambling addiction from escalating to this stage. Although it can be difficult for sufferers to admit to their problem and seek help, those who do have a good chance of regaining control of their lives.
Gambling addiction is a form of impulse-control disorder where sufferers cannot control their urge to gamble - even when they are aware of the consequences and the hurt it may be causing themselves and their loved ones. Compulsive gambling arises out of an uncontrollable urge to experience the natural anticipation and thrill of making large bets and potentially gaining large returns.