Gambling Addiction Explained

Why do Some People Get Addicted to Gambling?

Why do some people get so addicted to gambling?
Why do some people hold on to gambling even though they keep losing money?
Why would someone keep doing something that is destroying his life?

All casino games are designed in such a way to make the casino profitable. In all cases, the casino pays less than it gets. This means that people always lose their money to casinos in the long term. You can win 100 dollars today and feel happy only to lose 50 tomorrow then 100 the next day.

To understand why someone does a specific behaviour, you need to get a deeper understanding of things that happen in his mind before, during and after doing that behaviour.

Once you understand the dynamics that motivate the person to do that behaviour, you won’t only get a clearer picture of what’s going on in his mind, but you will also help him stop that behaviour.

why do some people get addicted to gambling

The uncertainty about the size of the reward can motivate a person to stick to a particular behaviour.

People go and gamble because they don’t know what they might get out of the machines. Had they been told that the maximum amount they can make is 20 dollars per day, very few would have become addicted to gambling.

When a person gambles, he thinks of his dreams, the possibility to get rich and to change his lifestyle. And because anything might be possible in gambling, the person finds no logical reason to stop him from dreaming. Its the attachment to specific dreams plus the fact that the rewards people get from gambling are variable that motivates most people to start gambling.

Your bad emotions would disappear when you start to take actions to solve the problems that caused them. For example, if you were financially troubled, finding a job might improve your mood a great deal.

As soon as someone gambles, his subconscious mind thinks that he is trying to solve his financial problems and prevents him from feeling worried about the future for as long as he is gambling. The lack of worries and anxiety provides an excellent reward for the person and motivate him to come and gamble again. This is called positive reinforcement where doing something that makes you feel good encourages you to do that thing repeatedly.

People stick to certain habits because they help them meet particular psychological needs. Now the need to feel secure about the future is temporarily provided to those who gamble because they believe they are getting rich as long as they are gambling.

Why don’t people lose hope in making money?

But if most people lose money in gambling, then why do they keep coming back?
Here are some of the reasons that prevent people from breaking gambling addiction:

  • The illusion of control: When I say most people lose money in gambling I am not referring to the outcome of a single game but am referring to the total amount of money they lost since they began gambling. When a person makes a small gain, 20 dollars, for example, he believes his skills are becoming better, and so the illusion of being in control motivates him to try again.
  • It’s doable: When someone wins a large sum through a slot machine, for example, noticeable sounds are played, and individual lights flash to draw the people near him. Now when a gambler sees someone winning a large sum of money, he starts to believe that he can do it as well, and as a result, he becomes more motivated to try again.
  • The near-miss effect: When a person gets two similar shapes on a slot machine he stars to believe more in getting three similar shapes forgetting that each slot has a different distribution of conditions to reduce the possibility of getting three similar ones. This near-miss effect makes the person believe that he was so close to winning and motivates him to try again.
  • Returning to point zero: Many people get stuck with gambling just because they hope to bring back the amount of money they lost. This usually happens when a beginner loses a large sum of money and so becomes eager to gamble again to get them back

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