Do you gamble too much?
Have you ever felt the need to stake more and more money? Have you ever lied to important people in your life about how much you spend on gambling?
If you recognise yourself in these descriptions, you may be one of many with gambling problems. You are not alone. Many women and men of all ages and in all professions have a gambling problem.
The Helpline on 800 800 40 is an anonymous helpline. You can call this number and receive advice and support in relation to your gambling situation
The Helpline can provide you with information about treatment and treatment options, and where you can obtain financial guidance. The person who takes your call also speaks English. The Helpline has also had conversations with callers who were assisted by an interpreter.
What is gambling addiction?
A gambling addiction is when you are unable to control your desire to gamble, and you continue to gamble even though gambling leads to financial, social and personal problems. Gambling for money becomes an activity that overshadows everything else. You gamble for more money than you can afford to lose.
Gambling addicts have an unrealistic belief that they can win back their losses. The shame associated with gambling means that many people put off seeking help and treatment. Treating gambling addicts who want to stop gambling has produced good results.
A gambling addiction can develop quickly, so it is important to be aware of the warning signs. Check out the warning signs listed below. If you recognise your behaviour in the list below, contact the Helpline for help. The Helpline can give you information in English.
Warning signs you should be aware of:
- Talking more and more about gambling
- Lying about gambling
- Gambling away lots of money in a short space of time
- Gambling takes a lot of your time
- Gambling to win back losses
- Becoming stressed and irritated when you lose
- Becoming stressed and irritated if someone interrupts your gambling
- Borrowing money or selling things in order to gamble
- Experiencing unexplainable financial problems and problems paying bills
- Being withdrawn and reserved in relation to family and their lives
- Having a strong conviction about future winnings
- Gambling alone over long periods of time
- Causing arguments just to have an excuse to get out of the house
- You must be careful if you win a lot of money the first time you gamble. Most people who develop a gambling problem often win a lot of money in the beginning.
Call the Helpline
Here, you can get more information in English about whether you have a gambling addiction or are at risk of developing one. The Helpline 800 800 40 can help you with your gambling situation and tell you where can receive treatment.
If you wonder whether you have a gambling problem or are addicted to gambling, you can ask yourself the 10 questions below. If you answer ‘yes’ to one or more questions, you should stop and seek help. If you answer ‘yes’ to more than five questions, you have developed a gambling addiction.Are you preoccupied with gambling? Do you become ‘absent’ when you gamble/think about gambling?
- Are you preoccupied with gambling? Do you become ‘absent’ when you gamble/think about gambling?
- Do you need to gamble more often and with increasing amounts of money in order to achieve the desired excitement/affect?
- Have you made repeated unsuccessful efforts to cut back or stop gambling?
- Are you restless or irritable when attempting to cut down or stop gambling?
- Do you gamble as a way of forgetting or escaping from day-to-day problems?
- After losing money gambling, do you often return another day to get even?
- Do you lie to family members and acquaintances to conceal the extent of involvement with gambling?
- Have you committed illegal acts (such as theft, forgery, or embezzlement etc.) to finance gambling?
- Have you jeopardized or lost a significant relationship, job or educational opportunity because of gambling?
- Do you rely on others to provide money to relieve a desperate financial situation caused by gambling?
If you are uncertain about whether you have developed a gambling addiction, call theHelpline. They can help you by providing more information in English about gambling addiction and treatment options.
About 70 per cent of gambling addicts who receive treatment manage well afterwards.
Gambling addiction is a diagnosis, which means you are entitled to treatment. If you want treatment, you must contact your doctor (GP). In order to receive treatment, you must be residing legally in Norway and be a member of the National Insurance Scheme.
Most of the treatment options for gambling addicts in Norway are on an outpatient basis. They involve one to two hours of treatment a week for eight to 12 weeks. The treatment services are spread throughout the country.
There is also a distance treatment option whereby all treatment takes place in your own home via the internet and telephone. For this option, a referral from your doctor is not required. If you would like more information about the online treatment option, contact the Helpline. Here, you will be told more about the treatment and also whether treatment options are available in your area. The person you speak to on the phone also speaks English.
Next of kin
A gambling habit is often at the expense of family, friends, leisure activities and other commitments. The gambling addict is often both physically and mentally absent.
Some people suspect unfaithfulness or drug problems. When they ask what is wrong, they are often given excuses or told lies. Many next of kin find themselves in a difficult situation, and it is often next of kin who demand that the gambler does something about his or her problem.
The Helpline is a helpline where you as a next of kin can obtain advice and guidance about your situation. Here, you will meet professionals who can provide support in crises, and who are very knowledgeable about gambling problems, warning signs and treatment options. You will receive help and advice in English about the concrete situation you are facing. The Helpline has also had conversations where the caller was assisted by an interpreter.