Problem gambling (or ludomania, but usually referred to as "gambling addiction" or "compulsive gambling") is an urge to gamble continuously despite harmful negative. Aug 11, · Researchers now say that high doses of some medications used to treat Parkinson's disease may make some patients more likely to develop a gambling addiction. Gambling addiction, also known as compulsive gambling, may be a type of impulse-control disorder. Compulsive gamblers keep gambling whether they're up or down, broke or flush, happy or depressed.
Is gambling a disease or an addiction?
Prevention of compulsive gambling usually involves addressing risk factors and educating the public about the warning signs of this disorder. Family therapy also may be helpful. Risk factors for pathological gambling include schizophrenia , mood problems, antisocial personality disorder , alcohol, or cocaine addiction. Preparing for your appointment If you've decided to seek help for compulsive gambling, you've taken an important first step. Third, personality factors play a role, such as narcissism , risk-seeking, sensation-seeking and impulsivity. A limited study was presented at a conference in Berlin, suggesting opioid release differs in problem gamblers form the general population, but in a very different way from alcoholics or other substance abusers.
Pathological Gambling Symptoms
During a recent study, published in the August 12 issue of Neurology, researchers discovered an unusual finding: Excessive gambling may be a possible side effect of dopamine agonists -- drugs often taken for the degenerative brain disorder.
Parkinson's disease causes the nerve cells that produce dopamine to die. Drugs such as Requip , Mirapex , and Permax are common dopamine agonists.
They work by activating the dopamine receptor in the brain. Ultimately, they mimic or copy the function of dopamine -- a chemical that transmits signals between areas in the brain that, when working normally, coordinate smooth and balanced muscle movement. Researchers at Muhammad Ali Parkinson's Research Center in Phoenix examined the data of nearly 2, Parkinson's patients over the course of one year. Of those volunteers, were taking Mirapex, took Requip, and were treated with Permax.
Gambling Trouble With Two of Three Drugs Nine of those patients were diagnosed as pathological gamblers -- a major psychiatric disorder characterized by uncontrolled gambling. Most of the nine patients were in the advanced stage of Parkinson's for more than 11 years before their gambling problems began. The patients were taking both levodopa -- a drug that the brain transforms into dopamine -- and a dopamine agonist. Eight of the patients took Mirapex as their dopamine agonist, and one patient was on Permax.
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Print Overview Compulsive gambling, also called gambling disorder, is the uncontrollable urge to keep gambling despite the toll it takes on your life. Gambling means that you're willing to risk something you value in the hope of getting something of even greater value. Gambling can stimulate the brain's reward system much like drugs or alcohol can, leading to addiction. If you have a problem with compulsive gambling, you may continually chase bets that lead to losses, hide your behavior, deplete savings, accumulate debt, or even resort to theft or fraud to support your addiction.
Compulsive gambling is a serious condition that can destroy lives. Although treating compulsive gambling can be challenging, many people who struggle with compulsive gambling have found help through professional treatment.
Symptoms Signs and symptoms of compulsive gambling gambling disorder include: Being preoccupied with gambling, such as constantly planning how to get more gambling money Needing to gamble with increasing amounts of money to get the same thrill Trying to control, cut back or stop gambling, without success Feeling restless or irritable when you try to cut down on gambling Gambling to escape problems or relieve feelings of helplessness, guilt, anxiety or depression Trying to get back lost money by gambling more chasing losses Lying to family members or others to hide the extent of your gambling Jeopardizing or losing important relationships, a job, or school or work opportunities because of gambling Resorting to theft or fraud to get gambling money Asking others to bail you out of financial trouble because you gambled money away Unlike most casual gamblers who stop when losing or set a loss limit, people with a compulsive gambling problem are compelled to keep playing to recover their money — a pattern that becomes increasingly destructive over time.
Some people with a compulsive gambling problem may have remission where they gamble less or not at all for a period of time. However, without treatment, the remission usually isn't permanent. When to see a doctor or mental health professional Have family members, friends or co-workers expressed concern about your gambling? If so, listen to their worries. Because denial is almost always a feature of compulsive or addictive behavior, it may be difficult for you to realize that you have a problem.
If you recognize your own behavior from the list of signs and symptoms for compulsive gambling, seek professional help. Causes Exactly what causes someone to gamble compulsively isn't well-understood. Like many problems, compulsive gambling may result from a combination of biological, genetic and environmental factors.
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