A gambling addiction therapy allows those affected to regain control of their lives. But the way out of gambling addiction is no easier. A gambling addiction therapy is usually the only chance to overcome the addiction, to get the debt under control and to rebuild the social network. Read all important information about gambling addiction therapy here.
Gambling addiction therapy: motivation as a basis
The basic requirement for a successful gambling addiction therapy is the motivation of the affected person. Although gambling leads to financial and personal ruin, addiction keeps dragging people back to the game. Addicted players often only gain insight into illness through serious crises. For many players it is the threat of divorce or job termination that drives them to therapy. The need to seek help is an important step in the direction of mental health. Only when the gambling addict is ready to be helped can the actual therapy begin. However, the person affected as well as the relatives must be prepared for a long treatment process. Gambling addiction can not be cured overnight. Even after therapy, sufferers fall back again and again into old patterns of behavior. A relapse is not a disaster, but part of the process.
If the gambling addict recognizes his problem and is prepared to accept help, there are numerous places that can help in eliminating gambling addiction. Gambling addiction counseling is designed to help the addict understand his or her addiction and the feelings associated with it. In addition, it shows alternatives to gambling and gives tips on how victims, for example, using a diary to understand their gaming behavior and control. Addiction and family counselors also help players and relatives to get their finances and relationships under control.
Outpatient or inpatient gambling therapy?
Help with gambling addiction can be done on an outpatient basis in a therapeutic practice or inpatient clinics or. A stationary addiction help is recommended if the addiction after playing is already strong. Many sufferers find it easier in the clinic to refrain from gambling because they are not constantly exposed to temptation. Some clinics in Germany now offer special treatment programs for gambling addicts. After hospitalization, reintegration into society is critical so that the client can regain a foothold in the real world.
Outpatient therapy is particularly likely to succeed if the patient receives support from friends or family at home. Important for an outpatient treatment is also that the gambling addict has the will to stop playing and therefore endeavors to keep up the abstinence. The advantage of outpatient treatment is that the person concerned can follow his or her normal everyday life and put learned behavior into practice immediately.
Individual and group therapies take place both on an outpatient and inpatient basis. The goal is the gambling abstinence. For many players, gambling abstinence is unimaginable and frightening at first. For gambling addicts, gambling becomes the center of life. Other pastimes and social contacts take a back seat. In therapy, the therapist works with the client to re-enable hobbies and restore social contacts. Social and professional integration in society are important prerequisites for successful and long-lasting abstinence from gambling. Even with the support of self-help groups, those affected can effectively fight their gambling addiction. Especially after a completed therapy, the self-help group gives the necessary support. Because the risk of relapse is now very high.
Gambling Addiction Therapy: Distorted Thought World
Gambling involves some players with irrational and superstitious thoughts. They believe that they can control the game through their abilities or that lucky charms ensure their profit. The knowledge that the player has no influence on the result of gambling helps him to distance himself from the game. However, it may take a few weeks for the player to be ready to acknowledge this fact.
Another problem is the false belief that gambling could solve all problems. In reality, the difficulties arise through addiction. In the gambling addiction therapy, the patient learns to become aware of his thoughts and ideas and to question them. Cognitive behavioral therapy is particularly well-suited for restructuring thoughts and learning new behaviors.
Gambling addiction therapy: trauma and conflicts
An essential part of the therapy is to find out the individual reasons for playing. In addition to possible negative or traumatic experiences in childhood, current conflicts in the family, the partnership or the profession also play a role. When the pressures and conflicts at home or at work become too great, those affected move further and further back into the game world. Gambling not only provides a welcome distraction from everyday problems, it also serves to regulate emotions. The therapist works together with the client on these profound conflicts.
Gambling addiction therapy: dealing with money
Dealing with money and debts is an important topic of therapy. Gambling addiction usually causes high money losses and debts. The relation to the real value of the money is lost.
The confrontation with the financial problems is initially an overcoming. Clarity about the finances and possible ways out of the debt situation relieve the affected person enormously. Because these money worries lead the victims back again and again to the slot machines, in the hope that the big win will solve all the problems. Players need to learn how to handle money step by step. In the inpatient treatment, those affected receive a small amount of pocket money. The therapist helps the player to replace his unrealistic monetary fantasies with real household bills.
Gambling addiction therapy with drugs?
For drug treatment of gambling addiction, there are so far no promising studies. However, gambling addicts often suffer from other mental disorders, such as alcohol dependence or depression. These must be treated accordingly medicamentous and therapeutically, so that the Spielsucht therapy is effective.
Gambling addiction therapy: help for relatives
Relatives often suffer just as much from gambling addiction as the person affected. They are also often involved in the problem. At first, many play down the problem and protect the player from critics. Sometimes they also extend the duration of the addiction because they pay off the gambler’s gambling debts or his upcoming bills. There remains the hope to be able to help the affected person and to bring him to reason. This wish is still fueled by false promises of the player.
As obvious as it may be for outsiders that the player can solve his problems by stopping gambling, for the person concerned this step is hardly possible without professional help. Many relatives realize late that they can not influence the gaming behavior. Often, their own social life also suffers from the addiction of their friend or partner and they have to bear their debts.
Anyone who has a pathological player in the family or in the circle of friends can help. But you should not lose sight of yourself. Maintain your social network of friends and acquaintances and openly deal with your relative’s problem. Get early help with counseling centers for gambling addiction, debt counseling and family helpers.