10 Signs That You Have a Gambling Problem

how to tell if you have a gambling problem

Gambling is common amongst people, and according to research, about 86% of American adults take part in gambling at some point in their lives.

86%! This is a lot, but it isn’t surprising. Gambling feels so good, it is thrilling, and for some, it is about a few hours of fun. However, for many, the thrill can easily wear off, morphing into an addiction, a road to financial and personal ruin.

Be it sports, scratch cards, poker, or slots, in a casino or online — gambling can go from a fun activity to an unhealthy obsession. The first step to recovering is finding out if you have a gambling addiction. At our California gambling addiction treatment center, we’re dedicated to treating gambling addictions and substance abuse. 

How to Tell If You Have a Gambling Problem: Signs & Symptoms

  • Obsession 

    • When you’re obsessed with something, it feels as though your whole life revolves around it. It is all you think and talk about. And once you get the chance, you’re on your laptop or at a casino placing bets, and even though you know you should stop, it is hard for you to quit. With technological advancements, where you can easily place bets with a tap of a finger, getting obsessed is very easy.
  • You lie about gambling

    • One prevalent symptom of any addiction is trying hard to hide and conceal that addiction. People who suffer gambling addiction throw caution to the wind, lie about their whereabouts, hide receipts, and the truth about their expenses.
  • You gamble despite the consequences

    • A causal gambler can easily withdraw if they lose more than they’re willing to gamble. However, if you have a gambling problem, you can’t seem to stop, not after losing more than you can afford, and not after you fall into deep financial problems.
  • Relationship issues

    • Gambling problems can stress your relationship with people: spouse, family, partner, friends, work colleagues. In severe cases, it could lead to job loss, criminal charges (if you result in illegal gambling), stealing, lack of sleep, and terrible financial problems.
  • Withdrawal symptoms when you stop

    • When someone with gambling addiction stops gambling even for a day, they may experience withdrawal symptoms. They feel the need to gamble to feel normal and happy again. These symptoms can range from irritability, insomnia, and loss of appetite to anxiety and low sex drive.
  • Feeling restless, bored, or grumpy when you cut down on gambling

    • Gambling is a game of major highs and lows. You may feel restless if you are not experiencing these intense emotions, and this can spiral to other mental health issues.
  • Stealing money for gambling

    • If you are have gambled a lot of money away, you may get desperate to have more money to gamble with if you have a gambling addiction problem. This may cause you to resort to fraud or theft if you do have a gambling addiction.
  • Asking loved ones to help you pay off debts because you gambled the money away

    • You may become reliant on others, particularly loved ones, if you are in debt or need more money to gamble. This will further deteriorate relationships with others.
  • Feel remorseful after gambling
    • Gambling was originally designed to be a fun, non-life-threatening thrill. But hey, when it gets addictive, that’s a no-no. You may feel remorseful after placing a bet because you know gambling is wrong, you know your finances are not on track, yet you can’t stop, and you feel guilty when it happens.

Why Am I Addicted to Gambling?

Gambling addiction or compulsive gambling is a behavioral disorder or an impulse control disorder that makes it hard to control the impulse to gamble regardless of the consequences. 

The main contributing factor of gambling addiction is the illusion of making fast and easy money. This mirage of get-rich-fast is definitely the root of gambling addiction problems. If you are trying to determine how to tell if you have a gambling addiction problem, 

how to tell if you have a gambling addiction

Causes of a Gambling Addiction

The exact cause of compulsive gambling hasn’t been established. According to experts, it is usually a combination of environmental, biological, and genetic factors. 

So, what’s the solution if I think I have a gambling problem?

Get help!  A lot of people with gambling problems often deal with denial; they can’t admit they have a problem. You can’t treat addiction by pretending it doesn’t exist.

If you have any of the warning signs or feel you have gambling problems, do not feel ashamed to ask for professional help. 

Enlight Can Help With Your Gambling Addiction! 

Enlight Treatment Center’s dual diagnosis treatment program in Ventura County offers assistance to people affected by gambling addiction. Our treatments are crafted to fit each client’s individual needs; we allow sufferers to confront their problems while we provide proven solutions. 

We are passionate about our clients’ wellbeing, and once they seek help from us, nothing else matters except helping them solve their addiction. What are you waiting for? Contact us today, and let’s help you recover from your gambling addiction right away. 

My Friend is Addicted to Heroin: What Do I Do?

heroin addiction signs

Sometimes I wonder why I didn’t see the signs that Henry, my best friend, was addicted to heroin. Looking back now, it could have been because we were in college. Although the wildness of freshman year had passed us by, Henry was still going strong with the weekend benders so much that I didn’t notice that something had changed. 

In the months to come, he would go through almost all the heroin addiction symptoms until the night I found him lying on the floor OD’d on heroin. 

I still feel a lot of guilt that it took Henry overdosing to open my eyes to the truth that had been staring me in the face for far too long. Like most friends to heroin addicts, I did two things I wish I could go back and change. First, I gave excuses for Henry’s behaviors. “He is only stressed about lectures… he just liked to party… he isn’t addicted… he just used occasionally.” 

Second, I accepted his excuses, especially when I knew that they didn’t add up. I guess a big part of me didn’t want to believe that Henry was a heroin addict. 

To a lot of people in the world, this example of a story sounds very similar. At Enlight Treatment Center, we want to let you know if you are a concerned friend, and want to know how to help someone addicted to heroin, keep reading to know the signs and symptoms to look out for. 

What Is Heroin?

According to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, heroin is a type of opioid drug derived from morphine. On the streets, heroin is called smack, big H, hell dust, and horse. 

There are two forms of heroin on the streets: pure heroin and black tar. The former comes in a white powdery form while the latter is black and sticky. Also, the color and consistency of the black heroine (black tar) come from impurities resulting from refining morphine to heroin. 

How Is Heroin Used? 

There are three main ways someone on heroin uses the drug:

  • Smoking 
  • Diluting the powder with water and shooting it directly into their veins with a syringe.
  • Snorting the powder through their nose. 

It’s common for someone on heroin to prefer intravenous drug use because of the shorter reaction time. 

How Can You Tell If Someone Is Using Heroin?

Friends and family of addicts often ask themselves why they didn’t notice the signs of addiction before it got too late. It’s easy to feel guilty about this, and to think things could have been different if you only knew, but please know it’s not your fault, and you are not to blame. If you suspect your friend or someone you know is addicted to heroin, here are some signs to look out for: 

  • Shifty behavior which often includes lying about their whereabouts and the people they hang out with. 
  • Changes in mood. You may notice depression, irritability, aggressiveness, withdrawal from other people. 
  • Track marks, also known as needle marks from where they have been injecting the drugs.
  • Stealing and money problems. Addicts usually need money to support their addiction. This could also include excessive borrowing. 
  • Syringes and other drug paraphernalia in their rooms or personal spaces. 

How to Help Someone Addicted to Heroin

The best thing to do for a friend who is addicted to heroin is to get them or encourage them to seek professional help. If you think they will be reluctant to look for help themselves, you can start the process of seeking treatment on their behalf. 

At Enlight Treatment Center, we can help your friend overcome this horrible addiction. We offer detoxification services, inpatient rehab treatment, and dual-diagnosis services for addiction. Please reach out to us today for more information regarding our program! Recovery awaits you or your friend. 

 

How to Talk About Your Addiction

talking about addiction

Discussing your addiction with anyone, especially relatives, can be a challenge and also scary. One of the best things to do is to prepare yourself for this discussion. At Enlight Treatment Center, we’d like to share with you some tips on how to open up to loved ones about your addiction. 

Come to Terms With Your Addiction

Before you can talk about your addiction with anyone, it’s important to be fully aware of what your addiction is and how it’s impacted those around you.  There are different types of addiction, including alcohol, substance, and gambling addiction. Some people are addicted to just one thing, while others are addicted to multiple things. After taking a step back and examining what you are addicted to, you can then share it with others while you seek treatment.  

What Are the Symptoms of Addiction?

There are different symptoms associated with addiction. One of the tale-tell signs of addiction is the amount of time you spend abusing substances or engaging in problematic behavior. If you spend countless hours gambling, engaging in risky behavior, or using substances, you may have an addiction. The other part of addiction is not being able to stop certain behaviors or misusing substances, even if you want too. 

Once your addiction begins taking over your life, a lot of things will change. You may stop engaging in activities you once enjoyed, stop going to work regularly or stop going to school. If you’re in a relationship, you are likely to experience problems as a result of your addiction. Other symptoms of addiction include withdrawal symptoms when you are not using a specific substance or involved in certain behaviors.

Talking About Your Addiction

Don’t worry about finding the perfect words. Talking about addiction with friends and family will most likely happen in an informal setting. We know it can be weird and uncomfortable, but this is your time to share what you’ve been going through, and use the words you want to use. Take a deep breath and start talking when you’re ready. Ask your friends or relatives to be patient with you while you start the conversation. Remember to take your time and breathe.

Let them ask questions

When talking to friends and family about your addiction, they’ll probably have questions. Because addiction affects not only the user but the people around them, your loved ones will probably want some insight into your behavior. It’s ok if you don’t have the answers to their questions, but by letting them ask you, you are giving yourself the opportunity to start reflecting on what’s been going on in your life. A Lot of times people want to know “why” you became addicted in the first place, and there’s a good chance you won’t know until you complete treatment. A completely appropriate answer to that question is “I’m not sure but I’m willing to work to find out”. 

Apologize

Like we mentioned before, addiction affects family and friends. When you talk about your addiction, it will also be a good time to apologize for anything you may have done that was hurtful. Addiction makes you do things you would not normally do, such as steal from family members and other places and avoid responsibility. An apology goes a long way. Your family may be upset, but they love you and probably frustrated because they don’t know how they can help you. 

Discuss next steps

Now that you talked about your addiction, clear the air by telling them how you plan to address the situation and recover. Discussing the next steps is the part when your family and friends might become overbearing, and it can be an overwhelming feeling. Keep in mind everyone’s emotions are all over the place, and your relatives may be in shock. People may have opinions on what is the best addiction treatment option for you. The best thing you can do is research yourself and pick a facility that feels right for you. After all, you know your addiction best.

How Enlight Treatment Center Can Help You

Enlight Treatment Center is a substance abuse and dual-diagnosis facility located in Southern California. We help individuals throughout the journey to recovery by providing scenic views of beautiful Los Angeles and taking clients away from chaos in the city. This helps remove them from situations that caused their active addiction in the first place. 

Our treatment options include:

  • Detoxification
  • Incidental medical services (IMS)
  • Residential inpatient
  • Dual-diagnosis treatment
  • Gambling addiction treatment

Enlight’s staff is composed of addiction treatment professionals who are caring and compassionate. Contact us today to learn more about our addiction treatment programs and see how we can help you or your loved one! 

6 Signs of Drug Abuse in a Loved One

While virtually any substance can be abused, some drugs have a higher risk of dependency than others. Certain addictions can be easy to identify, and others may take time to spot.

Many people with drug abuse disorders do not realize they are addicted until they can no longer control the use. Some may try to hide their addiction from loved ones to avoid confrontation or reprimand. If you suspect a loved one is suffering from substance abuse, the best thing you can do is support them and help them seek addiction treatment

So how do you tell that a loved one is addicted to drugs or alcohol? Here are a few signs to look out for:

Sudden Physical Changes

The first and most evident sign of drug abuse is a noticeable physical change. As the addiction takes root, these physical signs may be more visible and may worsen with time. In most cases, you will notice a sudden fluctuation of weight; the person either gains or loses weight suddenly due to overeating or undereating. People dealing with addiction also appear to have bloodshot eyes, which may pop out more than usual.

Depending on what the person is using, they may have marks or sores on their skin, particularly on the hands, legs, and face. You will also notice a change in hygiene as most addicted people tend to neglect their bodies and focus solely on drugs. Different drugs cause different physical symptoms. Be on the lookout for sudden changes that are seemingly out of the blue. 

Unpredictable Mood Swings

Most drug or alcohol users experience drastic mood swings. Some substances can cause extreme energy in a person making them too hyperactive or chatty. Other times they may become too quiet, violent, lethargic, agitated, or irritable, especially when the drug starts wearing off. When the drugs are out of reach or if the person is trying to stop, they may look pale and sickly. Extreme outbursts or random mood swings can be a sign that a person is struggling with addiction.

Withdrawal From Family and Friends

When substance abuse becomes too prevalent in one’s life, it completely changes the person’s behavior, character, and their entire lifestyle. The most significant telltale sign is withdrawal from friends and family. Since the individual is hiding his or her addiction from the family, they may prefer to keep things low. Instead, they will hang out with a new group of friends who are most likely using the same substance. They do this to hide their addiction from you and make things look as normal as possible. The person may avoid settings that put their drug abuse traits in the light, such as going for a vacation with family or visiting other families elsewhere. If a person is addicted to alcohol, they may avoid family or friends parties where their drinking could get out of control and blow their cover.

They Are in a Financial Crisis and Don’t Seem Worried

Whether a person is wealthy or not, drug abuse always leads to financial hardships. This is because most people do not care about the impact their addiction is bringing to their finances. As the addiction progresses, the person will need to use large sums of money to fund the addiction, which increases as the dosage increases. The person may not appear worried as they are in a stage where they can’t control the intake. As the person continues to obtain the drugs, they may end up selling their properties and assets to help buy the substances. Consequently, the person may borrow loans or steal money from loved ones to fund their addiction. They may also steal drugs in an attempt to fix their daily needs.

Exhibits Withdrawal Symptoms

Keep a close eye on a person you suspect is dealing with addiction and watch for withdrawal symptoms. This typically happens when the person is not using drugs or alcohol. They may try to hide the signs by locking themselves in their rooms, especially if the symptoms are too physical. The individual may also show unusual or constant cravings of the substances they use. If they are addicted to a certain over the counter medication, they may try to steal it from you to quench their addiction thirst.

When a person experiences withdrawal symptoms, they can exhibit erratic mood swings, become irritable, depressed, and fatigued. In their early stages of addiction, these symptoms may not be noticeable. The more severe the addiction gets, the more serious the withdrawal symptoms.

Lifestyle Changes

Many people dealing with addiction often change their way of doing things. In most cases, they are too focused on their drugs or substance addiction that they neglect their families or what they loved doing. For instance, if the person loved watching football, you may notice that they no longer like to watch and prefer to find ways of acquiring their drugs. Changes in hobbies, friends, diet, and even dressing style are an excellent sign that a loved one is addicted.

We Want to Help 

At Enlight Treatment Center, we are all about providing high-quality addiction treatment plans to individuals from all walks of life. We work closely with our clients and their family to give personalized treatment and support positive quick recovery from a wide range of substances.

When you visit us, we will first ensure that you are comfortable, in an excellent natural environment. Our expert teams will then ask you a few questions in order to determine which treatment option will best suit you. We are here to support you throughout your journey to sobriety. We invite you to contact us and learn more about our treatment programs and options available for you. Contact us today!

Opioid Addiction: You Can Get Sober

An opioid addiction can destroy your life if left untreated. The sooner you get started treating your opioid addiction, the sooner you can get sober and live a happy, drug-free, life. The first step to getting the appropriate treatment is recognizing what addiction is and how it negatively impacts your life. Once you come to terms with the fact that yes, you are an addict and it doesn’t have to be a death sentence, you can start treating your addiction! In the blog below we’ll discuss signs of an opioid addiction and how to determine the right course of treatment for you.

How to Know When You Need Help

Once you learn what the symptoms are of an opioid addiction, you can determine if and when you need help.  

Exceeding prescribed dosage

If you started taking opioids because they’re prescribed to you, a good way to tell if you’re abusing them is if you’re taking more than what’s prescribed. You should never exceed the recommended dose so this can be a key indicator of addiction.

Taking pain medication when you’re not experiencing pain

Opioids that are prescribed to treat pain should not be used when pain isn’t present. If you find yourself taking them every day, either out of habit, or intentionally, you could be facing an opioid addiction. These types of drugs were not created for long term use.

Starting to feel ‘out of it’ or in a haze

Another way to tell if you’re abusing opioids is if you start to take too much consistently and feel like you’re in a haze or inebriated. Again, opioids are prescribed to mitigate pain, not to get intoxicated. If you feel like you’re taking them because you like the feeling of ‘being high’, you may be addicted. 

Exploring Your Treatment Options

Once you have recognized that you have a problem, you need to decide upon the best treatment for your situation. The optimal treatment for your needs depends on a variety of factors such as length of addiction, severity, personal and professional commitments, and preferences.

The following are a few drug addiction treatment options you can consider pursuing: 

Detoxification treatment

Some type of detoxification treatment is essential to getting over any drug addiction. Detoxification consists of clearing the body of the drug in question. Detoxification usually involves overcoming any withdrawal symptoms that are present.

Detoxing in the midst of a drug addiction can be challenging. However, there are certain medications that can help including clonidine, methadone, and buprenorphine. These drugs can help prevent or minimize withdrawal symptoms. It’s important to note that trying to detox on your own can cause severe health complications. If you need to detox, please do so under the care of medical professionals. 

Inpatient treatment

Inpatient treatment means staying at the treatment center for a period of time, usually 30-60 days, and completing various addiction therapies while building a sober support system. Doctors and counselors will carefully observe your behaviors to help you overcome addiction for good.

Aside from addiction, inpatient treatment usually helps you with getting physically healthy as well. Diet and exercise is encouraged for all clients. 

Outpatient treatment

Addicts experiencing less severe addictions can often get the treatment they need through outpatient treatment. A client undergoing outpatient treatment can live at home and may even be able to continue working. Outpatient treatment includes individual and group therapy sessions.

This is also a good option for someone seeking sobriety who is also a sole caregiver. 

Aftercare treatment

Aftercare treatment helps to prevent relapses. During inpatient and outpatient treatment, you’ll learn the coping skills necessary to live a drug and alcohol free life. Aftercare helps reinforce these ideologies because recovery is a lifelong journey. Treatment will get you sober, but it’s up to you every day after that to stay sober. 

Lifestyle Adjustments to Maintain Sobriety 

In addition to seeking treatment, people facing an opioid addiction also need to adjust their lifestyle to overcome their addiction. There are numerous lifestyle adjustments that can help someone stay sober. 

One of the most important lifestyle adjustments to make is avoiding temptation by cutting any reminders of opioid use out of your life. Making new friends and attending support groups such as a 12-step meeting are great ways to build a sober support group. Developing healthy hobbies like exercise and meditation will also help keep you sober.

Getting Started with Treatment

At Enlight Treatment Center, we are a dual-diagnosis rehab program. We help our clients overcome addiction and any co-occurring disorders, such as anxiety or depression.  We’re located in Moorpark, CA, and are dedicated to helping any and all addicts. If you or a loved one is struggling with an opioid addiction, please contact us today.

Crystal Meth: Signs It’s Time To Get Help And How

Addiction can come in many shapes and forms. People can be addicted to anything ranging from drugs to alcohol, gambling, sex, and more. For this reason, it is important for people to be familiar with the impacts various drugs can have on the human body. Crystal meth, also known as meth, is short for methamphetamine. While this compound forms the basis of a number of important prescription drugs, these prescription medications have been tested and are tightly controlled. Street meth, which is what we’re discussing today, is highly addictive and can have devastating impacts on someone’s life. 

What is Meth?

Meth is short for methamphetamine. This is a drug that can cause dramatic changes in someone’s behavior. The structure of this drug means that it can have serious impacts on the neurotransmitters of the brain, how these neurons fire, and how people process and perceive information. In general, meth also has the potential to cause a more intense and dramatic high than many of the other recreational drugs. 

Signs and Symptoms of Meth Abuse

Signs and symptoms of meth abuse present in a variety of ways. Some are more obvious than others:

Behavior changes: Because of the intense nature of meth, behavior changes are common and noticeable. Someone using meth will be highly agitated, have an abundance of energy, and can be paranoid.  

Physical changes: Meth affects someone’s physical appearance. Acne, sores, weight loss, and rotting teeth are all common amongst meth abusers. 

Increased libido: Meth users often have an increased libido, which can lead to unsafe sex. Meth abusers are at a greater risk for sexually transmitted diseases. 

Sleep deprivation: Because meth is a stimulant, it’s not uncommon for users to stay awake for 24 hours or more. 

Psychosis: Meth has extreme psychological effects. Ongoing meth abuse will continually flood the brain with dopamine, which over time, will create an imbalance in the brain’s natural dopamine levels and dopamine-involved operations. Delusions and hallucinations can be common amongst meth users. 

How to Quit Meth

The first step in quitting meth is always asking for help. This includes reaching out to family members and friends for assistance. Then, these loved ones can help people get set up with a professional program that can help someone stop using meth for good. The goal isn’t just to stop using meth but also never use it again. 

While meth withdrawals are not necessarily fatal, detoxing while under the care of medical professionals is recommended. Withdrawing from meth can cause depression, which can lead to suicidal thoughts. Seeking treatment at a rehab is the best way to start your recovery journey. During treatment, you’ll learn tips and tricks on how to live without meth, while building a sober support system. Having a group of people in your life that understand addiction and who also have battled it themselves will be a key component in getting sober. 

Let Us Help You!

At Enlight Treatment Center, we have experienced professionals at our drug & alcohol treatment program. We are located in the gorgeous area of Moorpark, CA. Our doctors provide detox and inpatient treatment for addiction, including meth. We are a unique dual-diagnosis program that takes advantage of both traditional treatment and modern therapies to assist clients in overcoming substance abuse for good. Contact us today!

Medical Detox For Addiction: The Benefits

Addiction is one of the most challenging diseases to treat. Anyone who knows someone who has suffered from drug abuse, substance abuse, or addiction understands that this is an illness that doesn’t just impact the individual, but also their family and friends. It’s important for everyone to know about the various treatment options that are available. 

One option that you may have heard about is called medical detoxification, detox for short. This option is often a crucial first step to getting sober.

What is Medical Detox?

Medical detoxification is the process of ridding the body from toxins with the aid of medical professionals. The goal of detox is to clear the body while managing withdrawal symptoms.

When someone is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the body is conditioned to think that it requires these substances to stay alive. As a result, develop cravings. These cravings can be so intense that they cause someone to relapse. 

What are the Benefits of Medical Detox?

If someone is abusing drugs or alcohol, we strongly recommend detoxing with trained medical professionals. The detox process can be hard on the body and there are side effects. The pros to medical detox completely outweigh the cons. 

Supervision is Important

One of the most important reasons why someone needs to go through medical detox is the supervision provided. Medical detox provides staff who can dedicate themselves to the needs of an addict 24 hours per day, seven days per week. These medical professionals are equipped to handle the emotional and physical symptoms of withdrawal appropriately. Depending on the substance to which the individual is addicted to, the withdrawal process can be particularly severe. 

Many people want to make sure they don’t relapse during this time. Medical professionals have numerous tools at their disposal to make sure this process is as comfortable as possible. While it can be hard for someone to be made completely comfortable and at ease, this is certainly better than having to go through this process alone.

Withdrawals Can Be Fatal 

Depending on what substance someone is addicted too, there are life-threatening forms of withdrawal that might ensue. One of the most frequently discussed types of withdrawal are caused from benzodiazepines abuse. These highly-addictive prescription medications can lead to seizures. Seizures take place when the neurons of the brain start to fire in an uncontrolled manner. If this process is allowed to continue, it can lead to permanent brain damage. 

Alcohol withdrawals can also be fatal. Serious alcohol abuse can lead to delirium tremens. Symptoms include shaking uncontrollably, major confusion, and even hallucinations. Symptoms can start as soon as 48 hours after the last drink. This can be fatal because while the symptoms are occurring, severe mental and nervous system changes are occurring as well. If you or someone you know is looking to stop abusing benzodiazepines or alcohol, please seek medical detox immediately. 

Protection from Stress

Withdrawing at a medical detox facility will protect someone from the many outside factors that trigger a relapse. If someone tries to detox at home, they may continue to socialize with their circle of friends who use drugs or alcohol. 

Stressors such as relationships and work can easily derail someone from the recovery process. It’s important to take care of your body and once you start removing the drugs from your system, you don’t want to add them back in. 

Without tension, work responsibilities, and other triggers, people will be able to get started with the healing process. In medical detox, people will be able to focus on the most important task, which is trying to get better and stay better.

Let Us Help You

At Enlight Treatment Center, we are a drug & alcohol treatment program in Moorpark, CA that provides medical detox as well as inpatient options for addiction treatment. We cannot stress enough, if you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, please don’t try to detox alone. This can be extremely detrimental to one’s health.

We are proud to provide a unique dual-diagnosis program that combines traditional treatment and modern, innovative therapies that can assist you and your loved ones in overcoming substance abuse for good. If you would like to learn more about our drug abuse and addiction treatment services in Moorpark, CA contact us today!

Six Signs it’s Time to Stop Drinking Alcohol

Alcohol is often glamorized by society and social media. Alcohol brand commercials will show a group of adults having fun with a drink in their hand and everyone’s laughing. Canned beverages such as hard seltzers use marketing to target millennials and make them feel no party is complete without the drink. Unfortunately, this just isn’t reality and at Enlight Treatment Center we know this. If you’ve experienced any of the signs below you may want to stop drinking.

You Can’t Stop

Once you start drinking you can’t stop. You don’t even think about it … when your drink is empty you’re back at the bar ordering another one. The bartender turned the music off, the lights on, and you don’t want to leave. You can’t fathom going home and don’t want the party to end.

Change in Behavior

You’re usually an upbeat and happy person but once you start drinking your mood shifts. Comments people make towards you can seem mean and vindictive. Little actions can set you off like your partner talking to someone else and not you. You know when you’re sober these things don’t bother you but you just can’t seem to help it once you’re drinking.

Troubles with the Law

DWIs or driving while intoxicated is extremely dangerous. Aside from harming yourself, you can harm someone else. Driving while intoxicated can also result in being arrested and serving jail time.

Dishonesty

You find yourself making excuses and lying about your behavior. You get yourself into situations where you can’t tell anyone the truth. You know if you tell the truth the answer will hurt someone you love.

Health Complications

Alcohol metabolizes in the liver and drinking excessively hinders its ability to do its job. Alcohol abuse will cause alcoholic fatty liver, fat will accumulate in the liver, and is detrimental to one’s health. Another common health complication is gastrointestinal issues. Ulcers, acid reflux, and inflammation of the stomach lining, are all common in drinking too much alcohol.

Comments from Family & Friends

Last but not certainly least, loved ones who are concerned will try to shed light on your drinking. They’ll say things like “I’m worried about you”, “I noticed you’re drinking a lot”, “I don’t like who you are when you drink.”

Enlight Treatment Center is Here to Help

Seeking help can be quite daunting and overwhelming. It’s very common to even question whether or not you need help. The staff at Enlight Treatment Center is happy to answer any and every question you may have. We also use the diagnosis criteria of the American Society of Addiction Medicine to determine the necessary treatment services. Reaching out to us is the perfect first step to getting the help you deserve. It’s time for you to put down the bottle and get your life back.

How to Stop a Gambling Addiction: The Guide

how to stop a gambling addiction

Addiction can come in many shapes and forms. It can hit people in different ways. One of the most common addictions is to gambling. Sure, many people have heard about addictions to drugs and alcohol; however, a gambling addiction can be just as severe and ruin someone’s life just as quickly. Therefore, it is important for everyone to know about gambling addictions. This can come on insidiously and might not show signs or symptoms until it is already completely out of control. For this reason, there are numerous resources available to help those who are struggling with an addiction to gambling. People simply need to know that professionals are willing to help. 

Mark Wahlberg, in the movie The Gambler, took us through the struggles of degenerative gambling and how addictive it can be. In that movie, he perfectly depicted how much pull gambling could have and its consequences. In this article, we will be taking you through steps on how to deal with gambling addiction.

About 1% of the adult population in the US has pathological gambling problems. The most recent study shows that 6-9% of young adults experience issues related to gambling.

Before we go any further into providing possible solutions on how to stop gambling addiction, let’s start by putting the issue into perspective.

What Is Gambling?

Gambling is the act of playing a game, using cash as a stake with the hope of gaining higher returns. It relies heavily on luck. 

While many seem to claim that the knowledge of patterns and sequence of events puts them at an advantage, it still doesn’t negate that no assurance is involved. 

Today, gambling has been made more widespread because there are many options. Before today, gambling only takes place in specific locations. But now gambling has become so automated that every individual can take part anywhere and at any time. 

Not only can you play casino games for money, but you can also bet on sporting events with the possibility of amassing wealth in winnings.

Why Is Gambling Addictive?

It is apparent how worrisome gambling is. To properly proffer solutions on how to stop gambling addiction, we need to understand how it becomes addictive in the first place.

Dr. Cyrus Abbasian, an addiction specialist, explained that our brains are designed in such a way that they seek rewards. Going further, he pointed out that the reward comes in the form of dopamine – a chemical in the brain that makes us feel good.

This makes sense because the more we lean towards that part of our brain that’s inclined to seeking rewards, the more we plunge deep into the activity.

If you have been following our articles on drug addiction, you will discover that the increased levels of dopamine triggered by any addictive activity is attributed to the cause of addiction. It shows that there is a pattern with which addiction manifests, regardless of the triggering factor.

What is a Gambling Addiction?

First, people need to know what gambling addiction is. If someone is suffering from an addiction to gambling, their brain has been rewired to believe that gambling is necessary for survival. The brain sees gambling similar to food, water, and air. As a result, people end up being forced to gamble just to keep themselves somewhat stable.

The addictive part of gambling is the thrill and suspense that comes with every game and wager. People enjoy the feeling of not knowing whether or not they are going to win or lose. There is a feeling of excitement that comes with it. Then, when someone wins, there is a rush or “high” that people experience. This is similar to the high that people get when they use drugs. This is why so many people compare a gambling addiction to drug usage.

This addiction can get out of control quickly. Therefore, it is critical to identify every gambling addiction as early as possible. With this in mind, there are a few signs of a gambling addiction that everyone should note. The first step for how to stop a gambling addiction is becoming aware of the problem.

What are the Signs of a Gambling Addiction?

There are a few signs that someone might be struggling with a gambling addiction. It is important to note these signs so that any gambling addiction can be identified as quickly as possible. The sooner it can be identified, the faster it can be treated.

Losing Sleep:  One of the first signs that someone is struggling with an addiction to gambling is that they are losing sleep. Some people will stay up late at night gambling. No, people do not have to go to a casino to gamble. Now, people can gamble online. This has made gambling more accessible than ever before. This also makes it more addictive than ever.

An Inability to Stop: Next, people need to note that they will not be able to stop if they are addicted to gambling. People come in with a set amount of money they are willing to gamble. Then, they run out of money. Instead of stopping like they’re supposed to, they run to the ATM to get more money instead. Or, they try to gamble with their property. These are signs of a serious problem.

Relationships are Fading: Finally, people with a gambling addiction will also struggle to maintain their personal and professional relationships. Instead of staying in touch with family members and friends, they spend all their time gambling. Gambling has effectively replaced people in their lives. This is a sign that it is time to get help.

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How Bad Can It Get?

It is critical for everyone to note that an addiction to gambling can be every bit as bad as an addiction to alcohol or drugs. When someone is addicted to gambling, they run the risk of losing everything. Some people will end up taking out second mortgages or siphoning critical funds from their paycheck just to feed an addiction to gambling. They might even lose their job. When someone loses all their money, this is going to ruin their relationships with their loved ones as well. For this reason, it is important to remember that there are professional gambling addiction treatment centers available. With the right resources, everyone can stop their gambling addiction.

How to Stop a Gambling Addiction: Tips

Dealing with gambling addiction is tough. It is particularly challenging because most people with the problem don’t know they’re addicted in the first place.

Even though it is hard to curtail, it is quite possible to stop gambling addiction. The following steps may be beneficial:

Admit You Have a Gambling Problem

The first step on how to stop addiction is admitting that you have a problem. Don’t live in denial. You can only solve a problem you can identify. 

Resolve to Stop Gambling

You are more likely to be adherent to this resolution if you etch the consequences of gambling at the back of your mind.

Avoid Situations That Will Make You Gamble

If you want to stop gambling, you need to avoid places or situations that would make you gamble.

why is gambling addictive

Need Help Stopping a Gambling Addiction?

This is a more proactive solution that is popularly suggested. In actuality, it is the best way to go about it. Gambling addiction is better handled by experienced professionals that specialize in rehabilitating people struggling with addiction.

Enlight Treatment Center is an affordable luxury Rehab in Ventura County, California. We promote choices for healthier lives to those in need of prevention, intervention, and treatment for gambling addiction disorders.  

Our gambling addiction treatment program is designed to suit your needs. Contact us today to help with your gambling addiction.

Anyone who is suffering from an addiction to gambling needs to know that there are treatment options available. Nobody has to face this situation alone. At Enlight Treatment Center, we are a dual-diagnosis detox & drug rehab program specializing in addiction treatment located in Moorpark, CA. We take a great deal of pride in the resources that we provide to those in need. We will work hard to make sure that everyone who comes to see us is treated with care and compassion. Our professionals have a tremendous amount of experience in the treatment of gambling addiction and we would be happy to help you as well. If you would like to learn more about our services, please contact us today! We look forward to meeting you!

The Connection Between Gambling and Substance Abuse

Some addictions occur together, and they are known as co-occurring disorders. Gambling and substance abuse are one of the more common types of co-occurring addictions

A trip to Vegas is almost a rite of passage. Tempted by the ever bright lights of Sin City and the numerous casinos that fit its streets, people flock to the city that never sleeps to have a little fun. What’s a visit to Vegas without a little gambling? 

It could be fun playing with risks and high stakes once in a while, but when gambling becomes a compulsive behavior, an addiction is born. 

Gambling addiction is as life-altering as other forms of addiction like opioid addiction and alcoholism. Unlike these other addiction types, only about 0.3% of people struggle with pathologic or problem gambling. 

In recent years, it has come to light that many diagnosed gambling addiction cases were comorbid with other mental disorders like depression and substance abuse. This has then begged the question – is there a connection between gambling addiction and substance abuse? Could one be affecting the other, or are both disorders affecting each other in a never-ending loop? 

As these questions arise, more research has been done to determine if a connection exists between pathologic or problem gambling and substance abuse. 

Establishing the Connection Between Gambling and Substance Abuse

The first and most important connection between gambling and the varied forms of substance abuse like alcoholism and drug abuse is that both are addictions. 

Gambling addiction is a behavioral addiction that sometimes looks more like a compulsive-obsessive disorder rather than an addiction. But at its core, both conditions meet the standard requirements for an addiction diagnosis. 

Strong addiction elements – lack of control, dependence, and inability to stop even with negative consequences – make both disorders addictions. 

But perhaps the strongest connection between the two lies in their effect. Substance use and gambling both affect a common neural pathway in the brain. 

When pathologic gambling sets in, the addict experiences a thrill when they take on huge risks. And even if they fail, they gamble more with even higher risks in a never-ending search for the thrill of winning. They become addicted to the feeling of extreme euphoria they get each time they win. 

A person with a substance use disorder experiences something similar. Be it opioids, alcohol, cocaine, or any other harmful substance; the individual is also locked in the same destructive cycle of reaching for euphoria. Often, the thrill they seek lies in increased doses. 

With these strong connections, it’s easy to see how gambling and substance abuse could be co-diagnosed in the same individual. 

A recovering alcoholic and gambling addict recalled how alcohol was a handy numbing agent on the days when he lost. And on the days he won, it contributed to his state of euphoria. Before long, he became addicted to both. 

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How to Get Help With Gambling and Substance Abuse

Do you have a gambling problem? Do you think you could also be struggling with a substance use disorder? If you aren’t exactly sure, check out these standard requirements for diagnosis

There’s good news for you if you are. Dual-diagnosis is a treatment program for individuals who present co-occuring disorders. It is a treatment option specially designed to treat both addictions together. 

Enlight Treatment Center offers dual-diagnosis together with other addiction treatment programs. Located in Ventura County, this luxury treatment center isn’t just affordable; it offers high-quality treatment. Our staff is available to answer any questions you may have regarding getting started with treatment. Reach out to us today to stop your gambling addiction!

Predisposition to Substance Use

You’ve probably heard about the concept of predisposition. Namely, that if someone, or multiple people in your family, have a substance use disorder (SUD), that you are more likely to experience the same outcome for yourself. This is based on a person’s DNA or genetic makeup. Predisposition is generally seen because of certain variations of genes that are passed on from one’s parents. As noted by the U.S. National Library of Medicine, while these genes do not specifically cause a disease, they do increase the likelihood of the development of the disease. An interesting note is that not everyone within a family will end up getting a disease, it may pass over children and show up again in grandchildren. There is also the possibility that everyone within a family will end up getting the disease. It really comes down to what side of statistics your family’s genes happen to be on. In some cases, genetic variations account for only a small chance of developing a disease, however, the more genes that carry a variation, the greater the likelihood of disease development.

Epigenetics is something that should also be discussed here because it is the study of either inherited or sometimes the functional change in how the genetic activity is regulated within the body. It also works to explain gene expression, and how it works without dependence of the order of gene codes. It seeks to explain the fact that some genes are actually altered by environmental factors and other contributors that can change the way a person’s genes work. Often, epigenetics ends up being problematic for your children rather than for yourself. Breaking it down, essentially, what you are exposed to now and the things that you do to your body has the potential to significantly impact the way your genes show themselves in your children. Therefore, participating in substance use, for example, has the chance of altering your genetic makeup and passing along mutated genes to the next generation, without you even realizing it. Histones are also commonly studied within the topic of predisposition. Histones are explained as being what gives genes organizational structure. Genes use histones for the purpose of either having more or less control over gene expression. Research has indicated that there is a possibility of being able to manage those enzymes that seek to alter histones, which may have significant positive impacts on the future of SUD treatment.

Beyond Genetics

Even though genetics have been said to play a role in the development of SUDs, there is a little bit more to it than that. Some people begin using substances and their family members have never done so. There can be a feeling of wanting to simply try a substance or seeking out substances as a means of escaping things that you are feeling or experiencing. You may have been influenced to try a substance or felt pressured into it at the time. No matter why a person started using substances, the fact remains that they were ultimately a product of their environment at that moment, and their surrounds shaped their actions, and ultimately impacted in a negative way. Now, if you are someone who has never used substances or does so on occasion, it is important to pay attention to yourself and recognize that family ties may be important to you. It is not to say that because your parents were alcoholics that you will be too, however, you may be more likely to become one because of that fact. In this case, if you are someone who likes to come home from work and have a drink of some sort, but one turns into two, and then suddenly it’s five or ten, you have to be aware of your intake. Furthermore, if you feel yourself falling into a perhaps problematic habit, catch yourself and work to maybe find something else to do when you get off work or just simply being aware of yourself. It may be easier said than done, but you have the chance to not fall into the same patterns as your parents maybe did and you can be the difference for yourself, your future children, and maybe even help those in your family who need your support to move into recovery and work towards a better future. What you do now will impact your entire life and it’s important to keep that in perspective.

If you are currently suffering from a SUD, there is a chance that you feel like it is the fault of your family because they too partook in substance use. Whether they did so before you were born or have been doing so as long as you can remember, their use may have impacted yours. We want you to know that you can break the cycle and stop the appearance of substance use in your family and we want to help you. Make a personal investment in yourself and get help today by calling us at (805)719-7954.