Gambling is an activity in which participants risk something of value, such as money or property, in return for a potential prize. It can take many forms, from placing a bet on a football match or buying a scratchcard to more sophisticated gaming such as roulette or blackjack. In most cases, the outcome of a gamble is determined by chance. Gambling can have positive as well as negative effects.
The main positive effect of gambling is the sense of achievement that players feel when they win bets. In addition, the physical act of gambling activates certain brain receptors that produce the feel-good hormone dopamine and makes players happier. The literature also shows that recreational gambling can help people deal with depression and stress. Moreover, gambling can provide social activities that bring people together and increase community cohesion.
However, there are many negative impacts of gambling such as financial, labour and health. These can impact the gamblers on a personal level and also those close to them such as friends, family and work colleagues. In addition, problem gambling can lead to serious debt and even homelessness.
The biggest step in overcoming a gambling problem is admitting that you have one. If you’re unsure whether your gambling is becoming a problem, speak to a counsellor. We can help you get back on track, rebuild your life and regain control over your finances. Our service is free, confidential and available 24/7. Get matched with a qualified therapist in less than 48 hours.