Alcohol and Gambling Addiction

Alcohol use disorder commonly occurs alongside a gambling addiction.  There are a variety of factors that influence and encourage this relationship.  One obvious reason is the environment in which people usually gamble. Many casinos offer an endless supply of free alcohol while you gamble, so even an individual who began gambling as a non-drinker is susceptible to developing an addiction to alcohol as their time spent gambling increases.  Another consideration is the effect of co-occurring addictions on the brain. While one addiction is chemically induced, both trigger the same reward system in your brain and therefore create similar “highs” and intense cravings. The similarity of these cravings can motivate you further towards both addictions simultaneously.

Both alcohol use disorder and gambling addiction can have damaging consequences to your relationships and finances.  If one of these addictions presents as more obviously problematic than the other, such as when gambling leads to the accrual of massive amounts of debt, then the addicted individual may seek treatment for the gambling issue alone, and attempt to ignore the substance abuse.  Unfortunately, you cannot successfully recover from one addiction without addressing the other. There are unique factors to consider when assessing the relationship between two addictions, such as how alcohol lowers the problem gambler’s inhibitions and creates the circumstances for their gambling addiction to grow.

As with most addictions, underlying emotional issues and mental illnesses must be worked through over time with the help of addiction professionals in order to prevent relapse.  If you believe you may be suffering from co-occurring addictions to gambling and alcohol, it is a good idea to seek out a treatment center that can properly take on the unique challenges that arise from battling more than one addiction.

At Arbor Behavioral Healthcare, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms.  The Arbor uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, and at The Arbor you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan.  We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit, so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at 844-413-2690.