In a recent study published in ISRN Addiction and summarizedhere, researchers highlighted the issue of gambling addiction in persons with alcohol or other substance addiction. Researchers stated that gambling addiction is a hidden problem in individuals with drug or alcohol problems that is rarely addressed in 12 Step Programs and treatment centers. Between 10 and 20 percent of individuals with substance addiction have a gambling problem.

Here are some resources for gambling problems:

Gamblers Anonymous
Gam-Anon
National Council on Problem Gambling
National Problem Gambling Helpline Network 800-522-4700

Quick Screen to Identify a Gambling Problem
1. You have often gambled longer than you had planned.
2. You have often gambled until your last dollar was gone.
3. Thoughts of gambling have caused you to lose sleep.
4. You have used your income or savings to gamble while letting bills go unpaid.
5. You have made repeated, unsuccessful attempts to stop gambling.
6. You have broken the law or considered breaking the law to finance your gambling.
7. You have borrowed money to finance your gambling.
8. You have felt depressed or suicidal because of your gambling losses.
9. You have been remorseful after gambling.
10. You have gambled to get money to meet your financial obligations.

A “Yes” to any of these questions, means you should consider seeking assistance from a professional regarding this gambling behavior by calling the National Problem Gambling HelpLine Network (800.522.4700) toll free and confidential throughout the U.S.

My favorite tool to see if you have a problem with any addiction is this: Does your gambling cause a pattern of negative consequences in any significant area of your life, such as, finances, relationships, work, health?

As always, comments are invited. Jan Edward Williams, www.alcoholdrugsos.com, 09/21/2013.

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