28 Oct 16
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Do you suspect that gambling has become a problem for yourself or someone you are close to?

Gambling for many people is a social pastime, but when it consumes someone’s time and/or money to a point where other parts of life are being adversely affected then it has probably become a problem.

But how can I know if I, or someone I know, really had a gambling problem? Here are some simple questions to consider.

If you are concerned about yourself, do you:

  • think about gambling all the time?
  • spend more time or money than you plan to?
  • chase your losses?
  • feel like gambling has taken over?
  • neglect other areas of your life?
  • struggle with relationships?
  • have trouble meeting work or study commitments?
  • use gambling as an escape from problems?

If you are concerned about someone else, are they:

  • spending a lot of time gambling?
  • being secretive about unexplained absences?
  • often turning up late for commitments?
  • taking an unusual amount of time to complete simple tasks, such as going to the local shops?
  • borrowing money on a regular basis?
  • being secretive about financial records or payslips?
  • withdrawing from others?
  • changing sleeping and eating patterns?
  • worried, agitated or upset for no obvious reason?

If you answered yes to any of these questions then gambling may be a problem for you or the person you are concerned about.

What does this mean and what can I do?

Hand on ShoulderIt can be difficult finding out you, or someone you know, has a gambling problem and you may even feel distressed. If you feel this way keep in mind there are lots of things you can do to help get the situation under control.

A great first step is talking to someone. The old saying “A problem shared is a problem halved” really is true!

Who could I talk to:

  • One of our Counsellors – you can start chatting to them straight away – just click on “Get Started”
  • Your GP – they are very friendly and have access to lots of resources
  • A close friend or family member
  • A trusted member of your community ie. a spiritual leader or elder

Next steps

If you would like to know more about the signs of a gambling problem check out:

Understanding gambling – signs of a problem

Helping others – signs of a problem

About our service

Our services are free, confidential and available 24/7, regardless of how you have been affected by gambling we can help you every step of the way.

If you want to speak to someone you can start a chat session at any time at the top of the page or call 1800 858 858 and you can speak to a local service.

If you are having suicidal thoughts call the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

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