Addiction to gambling

How to Help a Compulsive Gambler

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. Updated: January 16, 2017
How to Help a Compulsive Gambler

Compulsive gambling or gambling addiction is a serious psychological problem that has terrible consequences for a compulsive gambler and those closest to them. This is compulsive and uncontrollable behaviour which compels someone to play and bet impulsively, without getting any pleasure from this activity. The addict does not enjoy gambling but merely needs to relieve their own pain or personal dissatisfaction. This OneHowTo article will give you some tips on how to help a compulsive gambler.

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Steps to follow:


The role of their family or those closest to them is crucial for helping those who suffer from this disorder. Whatever the degree of deterioration as a result of gambling, if the compulsive gambler is fortunate to have a partner, family or friends on hand who are determined and won't desert them, then this will be the key to overcoming this problem. With your help and motivation, a gambler may overcome their addiction over time.


When a family confronts a gambling addict, they may not acknowledge they have a problem or simply do not want to access any treatment. Firstly, the family must not deny that a problem exists or feel afraid or embarrassed about others' opinions. One really important thing is to prevent the addiction from developing into something serious.

How to Help a Compulsive Gambler - Step 2

Without the family's help and persistence, a compulsive gambler will not take steps to join a rehabilitation programme. With patience and suggestions from those surrounding them, an addict will gradually accept that treatment is necessary, and will start it of their own accord. In order to get a gambler to accept they have a problem, family and friends must be patient and consistent for them to start any therapy. Once in treatment, those surrounding an addict will help to achieve this purpose, by helping them to reorganise their life and find a healthy balance. This process can be lengthy, but it is possible to achieve and return to living a normal life. The family is the best self-help group.

How to Help a Compulsive Gambler - Step 3

Family or close friends need to do several things to help a gambling addict recover. It is crucial to understand that gambling is an illness and not a vice. You should treat a gambling addict as someone suffering from an illness who needs you and always treat them with respect and empathy. It is very important that everyone around an addict is united in facing the rehabilitation process.


A positive attitude when facing the problem is really beneficial for helping a compulsive gambler with their recovery. You must make them see that they can overcome addiction like other people and always deal with the issue calmly. It is worth getting to know and detect the behaviour of a compulsive gambler to understand what the symptoms of their illness are. Do not reprimand them for all the negative consequences caused by their addiction. Remember that this is an uncontrollable illness, and will not help the entire recovery process. Above all, let them see you're with them, that they have your support and you believe they can overcome their addiction to gambling.

How to Help a Compulsive Gambler - Step 5

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Help a Compulsive Gambler, we recommend you visit our Mental health category.

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How to Help a Compulsive Gambler