Gambling cravings are key to tackling gambling addiction

In a study between pathologic gamblers and alcoholics, the gambling addict experienced stronger cravings than did the alcohol dependent person. (

There are many ways to beat your gambling cravings, and they require you to change your thinking and behavioural patterns that have developed while in the grips of addiction. You will have urges to gamble while in recovery and counselling, it is not an on/off switch unfortunately. The temptation to gamble is hard to say no to, but as you learn to make new life choices and create healthier networks around you then you will succeed!

When you have a craving to gamble, here are some ways to help defeat the addiction and build the life you want for yourself. If you do not have these tools to help you, or only some of them, that is ok! Start just for today to look into making one or more a reality for you. Step by step you will get there and will have all the support you need.

  • Call a trustworthy friend or family member who understands your addiction
  • Call your Gambling Anonymous sponsor or counsellor
  • Fill your day with activities or keep a list of other things to do when a craving hits: clean the house, go running, start a hobby
  • Pop in a movie, watch T.V. or read a book, as the time will pass quicker and lessen your feeling to gamble
  • If you have nothing to distract you, either learn meditation, breathing exercise, or sit still and tell yourself over and over that the urge will pass and reflect on the consequences your gambling has had on your life

This time you will be able to change your life and get help with gambling addiction because you’ve read this article this far that must mean you have come to some realisation that you want to change.  This is an important first step. Often the cravings to gamble will take over those who get here and get them to step back.

The nature of addiction is ever changing, take notice of the ways to help yourself deal with gambling cravings and it will start to have a positive effect. You might not quit now or tomorrow but you will be on the path to recovery if you can keep coming back to these tips and start dealing with cravings in a healthier and more productive way.  You can beat your gambling addiction. Reach out for help now before your mind decides to keep things going as usual. Life is better when you are no longer powerless over addiction.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Counselling Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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London W1G & WC1E
Written by Mark Dempster, Counselling
London W1G & WC1E

I am a highly experienced Senior Accredited Addiction Counsellor, Traumatologist and Author with sixteen years personal experience of drug, alcohol and gambling addiction and over twenty years professional experience working with addictions. As seen on breakfast TV and radio I can help you break ad...

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