The UK Gambling Commission reports approximately 200.000 people suffering from severe problem gambling while several hundreds thousands more are in a mild or at risk situation.
The forced isolation many British suffer from the lockdown aggravated the figures because of the risk factors implied: Idleness, solitude and the dominance of online gambling, a dangerous mix that can be easily triggered a relapse even on those fully aware of the hazards of gambling.
Despite the current struggle with isolation, there are organizations both private and public with trained professionals in their files literally waiting for your call to help you.
Counseling services are available for problem gamblers of all ages, backgrounds, budgets and now with remote treatment, locations are not another barrier to overcome that bitter compulsion and finally regain control.
Mental Health Counselling
Why we gamble is the first question we should ask ourselves, but taking that initial first step takes a whole world of excuses, shame and regret to finally answer it.
Problem gambling counseling services are there to walk with you through the fire and trial needed to find the underlying causes that make you think of gambling as a mirage to escape the real problem that haunts you. Remember that their purpose is to help you, not judge you.
National Gambling Treatment Service
For many problem gamblers the hardest step to recovery is always the first one. But instead of drowning in doubt you can contact the National Gambling treatment service and throw out all that unnecessary burden.
The service is operated by GamCare, an independent charity dedicated to help all problem gamblers who joined non-Gamstop betting sites via CasinoGap in Great Britain. Their advisors are available 24/7 and ready to offer relief by simply hearing you, providing confidential advice, information and connecting you with specialist support across the country, tailored to you.
If gambling is taking up too much of your life and you want to finally start to regain control of it you can contact the service through the 0808 8020 133 number for free, or connect with their team through the live chat button to seek confidential advice.
Counselling Directory UK
If you are willing to seek help but you find waiting lists long and want to know your available options towards problem gambling recovery, the UK counselling directory is another good place to start.
Like all directories the search tool is a key feature to approach the right treatment you are looking for by narrowing your options based on: counselor professional backgrounds, specialties, locations (for remote or face-to-face treatment) and even types of treatment as sometimes the conventional practice is not the best-suit for everyone.
Finally, while the directory provides contact to health professionals rates might vary according to each specialist but don’t let that discourage as many provide a free 30 min consult to let you know if their service is the right one for you.
Gordon Moody Association
Although there are many options to overcome problem gambling some cases need a different approach to attend their disorder. For 50 years, the Gordon Moody Association has been able to offer that approach thanks to their residential treatment.
By taking the same measures as substance abuse treatment, residents in the Gordon Moody Centers thrive in a controlled space where they regain autonomy by attending scheduled therapies, activities and daily counselling to prevent any possible relapse once they finish their 12-week treatment.
While The 12-week program is totally free and accessible for everyone, those seeking the residential treatment must pay for their housing and living costs and the waiting list might be long. However, those who are eligible for the UK state benefits can cover the costs, while the truly helpless can get their residential treatment at no cost as the Association won’t deny what could be for someone its last chance for help.
Gamblers Anonymous UK
Gamblers Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who have joined together to do something about their own gambling problem and to help other compulsive gamblers do the same.
The GamAnon program was created by the new Gamstop owner and follows similar steps used to treat substance abuse by focusing on a personal and spiritual addressing of the root causes. Treatment involves meeting where people can be sincere about why they are gambling, the consequences of such compulsive behaviour, while building commitment and self-trust to achieve their goals.
For those seeking an opportunity to step into recovery through the group, the UK GamAnon site offers several meeting schedules both offline and online in order to catch up with others willing to take control back just as you.
One of the biggest collateral that every problem gambler faces is debt. The reason why problem gambling affects other people and the cause of severe depression as the economical restrain still exists after having compulsive gambling under control.
Independent counseling debt advice services are ready to provide the necessary advice to finally rid of the problem gambling aftermath. Like health recovery putting order in priorities and regaining consciousness of money value to honor debts, are the second and final part to achieve total freedom from problem gambling.
Stepchange is one of the UK’s leading debt charity that has setted the standard offering free financial advice and counseling people to manage a debt solution For 25 years.
Through a simple and non judgmental approach Stepchange advisors use a three step process to help clients manage a debt solution. The process simply collects information of your current debts, income and priority spendings, so the advisor can create a budget tailored to your current situation.
Keep in mind that debts will take time for their clearance but the advisor team will always be there to support you in every step.
If you want to create a real change in life you can contact their helpline 0800 138 1111 or live chat on Monday-Friday, 8am-8pm, Saturday 8am-4pm.
The National Debtline is a debt advice charity run by the Money Advice Trust. For 20 years they had helped millions to finally achieve a debt free status.
The National Debtline team of expert debt advisors come from a variety of different backgrounds. All of them are dedicated to helping you tackle your debts. Through a non judgemental approach, they provide advice of confidence and tailored strategies to deal with your debt, that once practiced, they drastically improve your financial situation.
The site offers guides, fact sheets, budgeting tools and sample letters to help you write to your creditors. You can also get debt advice by using the webchat service, email or by calling 0808 808 4000. Monday to Friday 9am – 8pm
Food for Thoughts
Calling for help doesn’t mean that you are losing control over the situation. In fact, it is you pressing the ejection button before the airplane crashes, but when the lines gots blurred you can barely see the difference from night and day while pushing further into the downward spiral.
Besides, after everything is lost, what else can you lose trying to make a change?