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Is Online Gambling an Addiction?

Online Gambling is a form of gambling that takes place on an electronic platform such as a website, mobile app or social media channel. It is available to anyone with access to a computer or mobile device, and it allows individuals to place bets from anywhere in the world. The popularity of online gambling has sparked debates about its potential to exacerbate problem gambling and other behavioral issues.

Some people use hobbies as a means of escapism to navigate daily stressors and cope with underlying mental health issues. Hobbies such as playing video games, movies, books and live shows can stimulate the brain to release feel-good neurotransmitters, which helps reduce anxiety and stress and improve concentration and cognitive function. Online gambling offers a similar type of escapism, and is accessible at any time of day or night, as long as a person has a computer or smartphone and an internet connection.

When online gambling becomes an addiction, it may cause individuals to prioritize their online gambling activities over their responsibilities, leading to isolation and strained relationships. In addition, problem gamblers may be secretive about their online activities, which can lead to feelings of distrust among loved ones.

Individuals who are struggling with an online gambling addiction should seek treatment. Support groups and counseling services provide a supportive environment to share struggles and receive guidance from trained professionals. Self-exclusion programs are also available, which help individuals voluntarily ban themselves from online gambling websites, helping to reduce access and temptation. Additionally, financial counseling can help individuals manage debts accrued through online gambling, and develop strategies for budgeting and repayment.