THE CONNECTIONS BETWEEN GAMBLING ADDICTION AND SUBSTANCE ADDICTION
Chances are, if you have visited Las Vegas, Nevada in recent years, you have probably witnessed a compulsive gambler visiting one too many Black Jack tables for his or her own good. Needless to say, Cirque du Soleil and Penn and Teller’s magic show are not the only attractions that bring in hundreds of millions of visitors to this Flower of the Desert each and every year. Gambling, simply put, is a terrible and unfortunate problem and, as with any other type of mental illness, it can be accompanied by another problem. In this case, gambling addicts will sometimes suffer from a particularly high risk for drug abuse and addiction (a case of comorbidity) due to their extravagant and overhyped lifestyles. Why is this the case? Let’s take a closer look at the connections between gambling addiction and alcohol use disorder/drug addiction.
Harsh Environment, In-Your-Face Booze
Obviously, pathological gambling or compulsive gambling are defined as any situation where a person cannot stop risking something valuable to obtain an excessive amount of money or an invaluable prize. In a high-risk environment like a casino, though, you can easily see why some of these compulsive risk-takers would be so eager to partake in the less than necessary parts of life. In fact, a recent study conducted in the United States confirmed that 73% of people diagnosed with gambling addiction (among the participants of the experiment) were also diagnosed with comorbid substance addiction.
Scientists believe that this heightened risk of substance addiction is caused largely in part by the stressful environment at the gambling stations and the loose atmosphere of the casino. At most of these establishments, alcoholic drinks are served freely, and less than reputable characters (who tote drugs) can hang out here to make a quick buck off innocent people.
Similar Physiological Factors
Interestingly, scientists have determined that gambling addiction and drug/alcohol addiction produce the same biochemical effects on the brain. According to past studies, people who suffer from pathological gambling and drug consumption have the same genetic risks for compulsive behavior and craving rewards more than the average person. Even more interesting, researchers have also discovered that people who suffer from substance abuse/addiction might also suffer from other mental health problems like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), nymphomania (risky craving for sex), and antisocial personality disorder.
Always remember that drugs do not have control over your life. You do. Are you suffering from a substance use disorder or a severe form of addiction? Do you have a friend or family member suffering from one or more of these debilitating illnesses? If you do, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our counselors and healthcare experts are ready to walk you through every step of the detox and withdrawal process and rehabilitation and guide you towards living a happier, healthier, and freer lifestyle. While the road to recovery might not be an easy road to travel, we promise to help you every step of the way. Take the first step to stay fit, healthy, and safe.
The time for you to take back control of your life is now. If you are interested in one of our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how to overcome your drug abuse or addiction troubles today.