More than 80 percent of adults gamble at least once a year, and for most, it is a harmless form of entertainment. For some though, gambling isn’t harmless. It is a serious problem.

Problem gambling is often defined by whether harm is experienced by the gambler or others. Problem gambling is an urge to gamble despite negative consequences or a desire to stop. Gambling disorders, like drug and alcohol disorders, affect people from every race, economic background and gender. A problem gambler will wager on whatever game is available, sometimes even creating bets on ordinary, everyday activities.

A simple two-question self-test can help indicate whether someone has a gambling problem.

  1. Have you ever felt the need to bet more and more money?
  2. Have you ever had to lie to people important to you about how much you gambled?

If the answer is “yes” to either question, it is likely there may be a gambling problem.