In its most basic form, gambling is just the wagering of something of value with an unsure outcome in hopes of winning some other thing of value. Gambling therefore requires three components to be present: risk, consideration, and a reward. When all three are present, there is an acceptable chance that the player will “win” the bet and get something of value (reward). In the past, in most societies around the world, gambling was considered something done by individuals in their own backyards with friends and family members taking sides in what was essentially a game of chance.
As technology evolved and people began to have more access to gambling, the nature of gambling changed. Now, gambling addiction begins at a higher level than before. Today, many addicts choose to gamble online or in other places where they do not necessarily have constant contact with the person they are gambling with. Online gambling has become a billion-dollar business, and it is widespread among all age groups and income levels. Addictions to gambling do not typically involve the use of illegal drugs, alcohol, or powerful prescription medicines.
Many of the things that cause addictions to gambling do not even have anything to do with the actual gambling behavior itself. One of the first things that causes people to gamble is a psychological predisposition to wanting to be financially secure. This can come from early childhood or later in life, but in most cases it is present. That means that most gambling addicts are people who are already insecure and looking for a way to add financial security to their lives. In many cases, this causes them to engage in behavior that is considered to be gambling behavior, such as betting, pulling numbers out of a hat, or any number of things that would be considered gambling in real life, but which are actually not.
Another factor that causes addictions to gambling is that the people who gamble tend to have relatively stable incomes. As I mentioned above, many of the people who are addicted to gambling are people who are already very secure in their jobs. These people feel that they are at a higher risk of losing money than those people who are not employed. So the reason they gamble more is that they feel they must do so in order to keep themselves on the straight and narrow with regards to their finances.
Problem gambling is when the person is unable to control his or her gambling behaviors. It is not necessarily because they are insecure, but because the problem gambling is a symptom of something else that is going on within their life. For example, some gambling addicts start gambling in order to escape real or imagined stressors in their lives. They start to gamble because they feel stressed, worried, anxious, or depressed. So when they start to gamble, they are engaging in what looks like a solution to these feelings, but what they are really doing is amplifying the problem.
It is important that we not look at gambling addiction as something that is unique to our times. This is a problem that can be shared by people in many different cultures around the world. In fact, it is probably more common than most people think. What we need to remember is that most addictions, whether it’s gambling addiction or any other type of addiction, are treatable if treated correctly. That means that the first step to overcoming gambling addiction and finding a healthier way of gambling is to figure out what is causing us to engage in this particular type of behavior in the first place.