Studies have shown that more than $6 billion has been lost each year to gambling addictions. This problem is far-reaching and can cause both individuals and companies to panic and act in ways they would not normally act.1
Gambling addictions also place a severe hardship on prison systems, public assistance programs, and legal systems. There are many consequences of gambling addictions that result in community economic costs.
Some community gambling addiction dangers include:
- Increased rates of unemployment
- Fraud and check forgery
- Forced home sales
- Increased alcohol and drug abuse
- Poor mental and physical health of individuals and families
How Gambling Impacts the Individual and Family
While the addicted person will definitely suffer during a gambling addiction, that person’s family will also face challenges. The stress that the problem gambler experiences may cause irritable behavior, secrecy, and arguments. Calls from creditors and bill collectors erode relationships. Financial strains impact all family members, and strained relationships make the experience difficult for even extended family members, friends, and colleagues.
The children of gambling addicts also suffer in many ways, including:
- Emotional neglect and abandonment (and even physical abandonment) when one parent is consumed in an addiction.
- Stressed and irritable parents may lash out at children angrily, and even if they do not, these children can sense their parents’ tension.
- Children of people with gambling addiction are at higher risk of experiencing their own addictions later in life.
If You Can’t Stop Gambling, Your Life Will Be Forever Be unchanged
The effects of a gambling addiction are often quite clear. A large number of people who engage in compulsive gambling will use credit cards and debit cards to pay casinos or internet gambling organizations. If you engage in problem gambling and leave this problem untreated, you may incur debt and you will lose sight of your goals, and your relationships. You may also lose your vehicle, your home, or even your freedom without treatment to end this cycle.
There are many ways that an untreated gambling addiction can change your life.
- Family problems are very common. Almost all compulsive gamblers around the world have issues at home with their family because of their addiction.
- Financial devastation is unavoidable. People with a gambling addiction will go to extreme measures to get money to gamble. Many people eventually resort to stealing, taking out large loans, or other desperate means that are out-of-character.
- Job loss is very high among gambling addicts. Gambling addiction may lead you to miss work, or come to work distracted. Gambling addictions will interfere with work relations, promotions, and employment.
No matter how bad a gambling addiction has become, it is possible to turn things around.