The Impact of Alcohol, Drug, and Gambling Addiction on Human Life
We live in high-paced and stressful lives, and it is only natural to look for a way to unwind. Unfortunately, some relaxation methods come with a big risk of addiction. The most frequent dependency risks include mainstay alcohol, drugs, and gambling. It all starts with a drink or two, but then your brain starts asking more. In this article, we will focus on offering detailed information about the riskiest addictions and advice on how to deal with them.
What is Gambling Addiction and How to Deal with It
Gambling addiction is a term used to describe the dependence that some players have with respect to money-earning games. These games traditionally include classic casino table games (such as Roulette and Blackjack), slots, lotteries, scratch cards, horse races, sports betting and card games, particularly the various forms of poker. If you are struggling now with this problem, we recommend you to read the gambling addiction guide for Canadians. Gambling addiction is an increasingly common problem because of the ease of access to online gambling options and the proliferation of such sites.
When Gambling Becomes a Problem
Gambling addiction is debilitating. It affects more men are than women and this form of dependence, like all addictions, can gradually transform your life in a continuous cycle of despair and depression.
The Power of Small Wins: How Dopamine Controls The Life of a Gambler
Every time a player earns a small amount, dopamine is released in his brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, that is, a molecule that transmits information between neurons. Our brain releases this substance during pleasureful experiences, such as great food, sex, meditation, drug use, family reunions and yes, gambling. That’s why it’s dubbed the “happiness hormone.”
The addicted gambler is, therefore, in a constant quest for his dopamine fix and hopes for a higher and longer-lasting dose.
How to Spot Gambling Addiction
It’s easy to view ourselves as the exception to the rule – or more durable than the disease – but the reality is that humans all have weaknesses. Some individuals are more aware than others of the dangers and pitfalls that come with pleasureful activities. Still, we’re all capable of developing a form of addiction at any point during our lifetime.
Although all forms of dependence share one common denominator – the uncontrollable urge to consume a particular product or perform a certain act – gambling addiction has a specific set of symptoms. Whether you’re concerned about a family member or friend, or that you’re wondering if your level of enthusiasm for the latest online slots is acceptable, searching for answers if a healthy way to deal with something that may hide essential issues.
As a stepping point, we’ve elaborated a checklist that will demonstrate if you should be paying closer attention.
The 5 signs of gambling addiction:
- Increasing or Incessant Concern with Playing Casino Games: The first sign is the most obvious one. The addicted player devotes most or all of his time with casino games to a point this activity occupies all of his spare time.
- Lying: The player hides and makes excuses for time spent playing. Example: he hasn’t played online poker all night but did some internet research for a business idea. He hasn’t been sick with the flu but played online slots all day.
- Chasing Millions: They’re always playing for the “big one”… He pictures himself above it all and living an idyllic life… He defeated the system while playing games and is now debt-free, carefree and sitting in his 12-bedroom mansion in the South of France.
- Dept Accumulation and Vanishing Money: The player has accumulated debts from different sources. These sources are usually close family members, friends, co-workers or even loan sharks. He might have secretly sold expensive items to feed his incessant gaming needs or pay his debts. These are usually jewellery, cars and real estate.
- Aggressivity and Irritability: Gambling addiction is part of a lifestyle. It’s characterized by poor eating habits, late nights, little sleep, little or no exercise, weak social interactions, poor money-related decisions and the loss of assets. It results in stresses that make the gambler easily irritable and increasingly aggressive to the people in his life.
How and Where You Can Get Help to Begin Gambling Addiction Treatment?
A gambling problem could be described as a bad habit on steroids. While the term “addiction” is mostly used concerning a form of chemical dependency (drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, etc.), gambling addiction is rooted in receiving a tiny dose of dopamine triggered by money earned while playing games. It is similar to the small buzz we get when someone “likes” our photo or post on social media.
Like all forms of addiction, gambling dependency is dynamic, which means that it can manifest itself through exposure, grow or diminish and even be erased. Ex-cigarette smokers often can’t believe their now former addiction, which required to puff away 10-20 times a day.
It is merely due to the neuroscience of habits, and our brain’s capacity to form pathways as we engage in a new activity. In other words, any person can change his or her brain by simply focusing and practicing new activities.
How to Stop Gambling Addiction
The 5 Steps to Deal with Gambling Addiction
Step 1: Acceptance
A person who is addicted is essentially a suffering individual. The first step to recovery will be to accept that he’s dealing with a severe problem, one that could result in bankruptcy, years of financial struggle and even suicide.
Step 2: Come Clean
The gambler needs to reach out to his close people and open-up about his addiction. The is probably the most difficult step as this will require him to expose his excuses, lies and explain the loss of money or assets. But honesty is the cornerstone of any recovery. Complete disclosure to the spouse is required at some point during this process.
Step 3: Get Help
Asking and searching for help will force the gambler to communicate about his addiction and addressing an issue is always the first step to getting it resolved. For this, he will require a support team and allies (see links below) that will help him stop this endless cycle. There are several competent groups and organizations that specialize in this process, and it’s usually a great way to gain support. If the player feels completely isolated, contacting a doctor could prove to be the best way forward.
Step 4: Stop Playing
Ceasing playing casino games requires complete dedication as well as full attention and engagement. It may need the gambler to have his online accounts closed, having him submit a blacklisting request to these sites and/or land casinos. It will require close monitoring and any urge must be addressed immediately, without delay. Gambler’s support team should be well defined, and some members easily reachable, similarly to what alcoholics practice with the infamous Alcoholics Anonymous.
Step 5: Create New Habits
Ceasing gambling will create a void in the player’s life that needs to be addressed to ensure success. The best way to get rid of a bad habit is to create a new healthy habit. According to a study published in the European Journal of Social Psychology, it takes roughly 2 months of daily practice to create a new automatic habit.
Of course, there are steps to get there and a person will improve incrementally. Therefore, positive signs will appear just a few weeks after the beginning of the recovery process.
Find Healthier Gambling Substitutes
Remember, the reason you have an addiction is not because of the gambling itself but because of the feeling that you get from it. Therefore, you need to seek healthier activities or hobbies that can give you the same feeling.
You can try the following options as healthier substitutes to give you the same feeling of excitement that gambling does:
- Daily Meditation
- Rock Climbing
- Learn A New Skill
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive behavioural therapy, or CBT, will focus on changing your false beliefs and rationalizations for gambling. CBT can also give you tools for coping with gambling addiction and even help you in other related areas of your life, such as financial or relationship problems.
Resources For Gambling Addiction Help
In Canada, there are several government entities and sponsored programs for addicted gamblers. Here’s a short list to get you started:
- Gambling Addiction Test (http://www.jeu-aidereference.qc.ca/www2/Article/213/en/gambling-addiction-test)
- Canada Safety Council (https://canadasafetycouncil.org/gambling-addiction/)
- Canadian Centre For Addiction (https://canadiancentreforaddictions.org/understanding-addiction/gambling-addiction/)
- Gamblers Anonymous (http://www.gamblersanonymous.org/ga/addresses)
How Canadian Alcohol Affects our Brain Chemistry
Have you ever wondered why do people drink alcohol? The main reason is to relax, especially after a tiring day or before an important event in their lives. However, alcohol falls into the category of depressants, which can affect the brain’s chemical processes. If you influence the balance of processes and chemicals, you also affect how the brain works.
Depressants are capable of influencing how you act, think, and feel. If you had a glass or two of wine, you know it makes you relaxed after drinking it. It might help with anxiety and boost confidence and courage. However, the courage comes at a price – the part of the brain in charge of inhibition is not working properly.
If you use depressants in the long run, they can disrupt your mental health. That means alcohol can have short and long-term harm to your brain. The more you consume mainstay alcohol, the more you need it. It becomes hard to achieve a positive mood and confidence without it. Additionally, many people exhibit bad behavior when drinking too much, including aggression, violence, and depression.
Alcohol Increases Anxiety
Imagine this scenario – you have a problem speaking to girls, and you are about to go on a date. It’s natural that you feel anxious, and you might resort to mainstay alcohol to deal with that anxiousness. At first, it all seems great, and you feel more confident. The problem is that this is a short-term effect that won’t last forever.
Once the effects disappear, you might take another dose of Canadian alcohol. The problem is your brain keeps asking for more to “relax” and hide your anxiety. Over time, you develop a higher level of tolerance to alcohol, resulting in becoming dependent on this compound. That can be dangerous, especially if a person realizes that they can’t achieve the desired “relaxation” without drinking a lot of alcohol.
After you had an alcohol-filled night, you will probably wake up with a hangover. That is when you might ask yourself – why do people drink alcohol in the first place? As if the hangover isn’t enough, it can contribute to anxiety issues. Our brain and body still need to process alcohol leftovers, and as it disappears, we start feeling nervous and depressed. If you have general anxiety issues, it is more likely to feel agitated while hungover from last night.
Is there a way to deal with anxiety without drinking alcohol? Here are some tips to help you feel less anxious:
- Exercise – physical activity is a great way to feel better and improve your shape.
- Meditation – try yoga or any other mindful exercises that will help to reduce stress.
- Do Things You Love – do you like playing video games, or maybe you are a DIY enthusiast? Try engaging in your favorite hobby, or play a comedy TV show because laughter is great anti-stress therapy.
Mainstay Alcohol Consumption and Depression
The scientists are aware that Canadian alcohol interacts with your brain and modifies how you act, feel, and think. Apart from short-term effects, alcohol can also have a long-term negative influence on your mental health. Although there aren’t sufficient studies on the topic, heavy drinking is often among the depression signs worth considering.
According to experts, alcohol plays with different systems in our organism and affects our mood. That is how drinking can affect depression. It is also why fighting your addiction to alcohol can help you feel less depressed and improve your mood. Even if it might not seem so at the start, you should feel better in the long run.
Another important information is that you should never combine alcohol and depression medications. If you are dealing with alcohol addiction, it might be wise to stay away from anti-depressants during the process because they are a relapse risk. If the doctor recommended the medications, you should take them, but with caution.
Alcohol Can Cause Even More Serious Consequences
Psychosis, hallucinations, mental deviations, and suicidal thoughts sound serious because they are. Alcohol addiction is connected to psychosis, which can have serious consequences.
If you drink mainstay alcohol, it affects how you judge situations and boosts impulsive decision making. That means you might forget about stopping mechanisms called inhibitions because that part of your brain can’t be used right when under the influence of alcohol.
The experts found the connection between heavy drinking, even if it is not chronic, and suicide attempts and thoughts. Unfortunately, even suicides themselves have occasionally been directly related to increased amounts of alcohol in the organism.
Canadian alcohol can lead to psychosis if you drink it in a large amount (over 30 units daily for weeks). That includes delusions and hallucinations, which can also occur in the process of withdrawals, especially if you suddenly stop using alcohol.
Check out the list of three clinics in Canada that help people dealing with alcohol addiction:
Addiction Rehab Toronto
Neworld Medical Detox Centre
Addiction Rehab Vancouver
Keep Yourself in Control
An occasional glass of wine or whiskey won’t harm your long-term health. It is perfectly fine to relax while hanging out with friends, and some mainstay alcohol shouldn’t cause serious issues.
The experts set the limit of allowed alcohol at 14 units weekly for both males and females. That means about six average-sized wine glasses or six pints of beers. It all depends on your capability to handle Canadian alcohol and the strength of the drink you are consuming.
You should also ensure not to drink the entire amount during a single night. It would be wise to spread it across three or four days to ensure you have days when you don’t consume a single alcoholic drink. Finally, try to keep alcohol levels as low as possible. The more often you drink, the higher odds of physical and mental health issues appearing. If you want to keep your brain in optimal shape, avoiding alcohol is a good place to start.
Important Questions about Alcohol Addiction
What is Alcohol Addiction?
If you are addicted to alcohol, that means you are physically or emotionally dependent on it. That implies you need to drink alcohol regularly to feel confident and positive about yourself. It is one of the most common and dangerous addictions in the world.
How to Cure Alcohol Addiction?
It all starts by admitting you have a problem. Once you are ready to fight it, everything will be easier. You want to ask professionals to help you devise a plan. It might include detoxification, medication, counseling, and other treatments.
How Long is a Rehab for Alcohol?
That will depend on your addiction level and how serious you are to deal with your alcohol problem. The rehab programs might last from one to three months, and they are only successful if you are dedicated to success.
Synthetic Drug Addiction in Canada
The biggest problem with drug addiction in Canada is that many people become addicts without becoming aware. It often starts by trying drugs in the company of friends. Before you know it, you get trapped in the twisted world of addiction.
It is critical to understand that drug addiction is serious. Giving up narcotics is much more than purely saying, “I will stop using them now.” It takes strong principles and will stop drug use, and addicts have to rely on both friends and professionals’ help.
If you use drugs, they play with your brain, so it is crucial to find optimal treatments. The good news is that professionals can design therapies that will help you return to your normal life as soon as possible.
According to the drug addiction statistics Canada received from the United Nations, this country is the biggest exporter of methamphetamines and ecstasy. These two drugs have been popular for years, and it turns out that the biggest market for Canadian products is the United States. Canada’s geographical position explains that. It is close to the US, and they have a large market for distributing these products.
Canada is a large exporter to other countries, too. For example, the experts claim that over 80% of meth in Australia comes from North America. If we talk about drug use, we should mention the popularity of meth and ecstasy is still higher than heroin, cocaine, and even marijuana.
What about the use of Canada? It might be interesting to note that things are not as dramatic, especially if you consider how much drugs the country exports. However, meth is still dangerous for Canadian residents, and many people develop an addiction from it.
What is Drug Addiction?
How to recognize drug addiction in Canada? If the person seeks drugs regularly and notices that it is hard for them to control the use of drugs, the odds are they are an addict. Addiction is a disease and a chronic problem that can have serious consequences.
The first time you take drugs, you probably make a willing decision to do so. However, as you become addicted, drugs start affecting your brain. It keeps asking for more, and it is difficult to fight that urge. That is why addicts keep looking for another those.
A big problem with these modifications in the brain is that they can last for a long time. For example, it might be years before you have a relapse. That is why drug addiction is a chronic health condition that requires individual treatments suitable to a particular patient.
Here are three facilities you can turn to if you are dealing with drug addiction:
Portage Elora Drug Addiction Rehabilitation Centre
Neworld Medical Detox Centre Toronto
Canada Drug & Alcohol Treatment
Facts Shows that Drug Addiction in Canada Can be Stopped
The drug abuse in Canada facts shows that many people are dealing with this addiction. It is a chronic disease, which means it belongs to the same category as asthma and diabetes. That generally implies the cure doesn’t exist, but it is possible to manage drug addiction efficiently.
Addicts need to understand that dealing with an addiction is an ongoing process that might never stop. You might face problems with relapses years after the initial addiction. That is why mixing suitable medications with adequate behavioral modification and counseling are crucial for treating this problem. It is vital to control social, mental, medical, and other conditions that might lead to a relapse.
As always, the best way of curing a disease is to prevent it in the first place. The National Institute for Drug Abuse conducted research that shows the importance of prevention mechanisms. That is why they designed programs on raising awareness in schools and communities throughout the country.
The idea is to reduce drug addiction in Canada and help teens understand that drugs can have short and long-term negative effects. The organization involves everyone from health care institutions to parents and teachers when conducting these programs, which increases the odds of success.
Important Questions about Drug Addiction
What is Drug Addiction?
A drug addict is a person who can’t stop using narcotics willingly. Drug addiction is when a person requires meth, ecstasy, or other drugs regularly, and it is a chronic disease that often requires professional help.
How to Help Someone with Drug Addiction?
The best thing you can do is provide unconditional support while ensuring they get professional help. It is imperative to convince them to visit a medical professional to design an individual treatment for dealing with the addiction.
How Much does Drug Rehab Cost in Canada?
You can visit a public institution and receive free drug rehabilitation treatment. An alternative is to find a private facility providing these services. Talking to professionals and going to a drug rehab center might end up costing $20,000 or more per month.