Gambling addiction is sometimes referred to as the “hidden addiction” because unlike drug or alcohol dependence, problem gambling shows no obvious physical signs or symptoms. Disordered gamblers typically deny the fact they have a problem and need help, or simply minimize the negative impact it is having on their lives. Often, they may not realize that they have a problem if their addiction does not conform to the typical image of skill-based gambling in Atlantic City, NJ, casinos. Internet poker players, lottery regulars, and fantasy sports league members in smaller towns like Monmouth, Freehold, and Marlboro Township can also be susceptible to disordered gambling.
Unpleasant feelings such as stress, depression, loneliness, fear, and anxiety can trigger disordered gambling or make it worse. Problem gamblers also tend to go to great lengths to hide their gambling activities from friends, family members, and others. They often show signs of withdrawal and preoccupation, isolate themselves, and even lie about where they have been or what they have been doing. But problem gamblers do not have to struggle in silence: There is support, treatment, and hope just a phone call or click away right here in New Jersey, from casino strongholds like Atlantic City to ordinary suburban towns like Freehold and Marlboro Township.
1-800-GAMBLER is a free and confidential 24/7 help line dedicated to offering support, treatment, and hope to problem gamblers as well as to their friends or loved ones. When you call our hotline, a representative is there to take your call 24 hours a day. They will gather basic information in an effort to help guide you to local twelve-step Gamblers Anonymous meetings in the state of NJ—from Atlantic City to Monmouth and everywhere in between—as well as to a counselor or treatment facility that will best handle your needs. All information is kept completely confidential. In addition to our hotline, the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey (CCGNJ) offers the ability to send texts to 1-800-GAMBLER, as well as an online feature where you can “Click to Chat” and communicate online with a representative who will identify the best treatment options available to you.
CCGNJ sub-contracts with eight (8) treatment programs throughout the state who have certified gambling counselors on staff to provide gambling treatment. These services are available to both the problem/disordered gambler and also, the family member/significant other. Should an individual not have health insurance coverage for treatment services, often times the treatment charges would be minimal or funded through the state.
We recognize that each problem gambler is unique, and what works for one gambler won’t necessarily help another. Gambling can afflict anyone, from military veterans with a gambling problem in Freehold, NJ, to elderly folks who spend their life savings on gambling in Monmouth, NJ. It is important to seek professional help so that you can find the right treatment option. That being said, the biggest step for anyone struggling with an addiction is realizing he or she has a problem. It takes tremendous strength and courage to come to this realization, especially if you have lost a lot of time and money and have strained or broken relationships along the way. Overcoming the progressive nature of this type of addiction is never easy, but recovery is possible. Take the first step and call 1-800-GAMBLER today. For more information, visit us on the web at www.800gambler.org.