How you can help someone with a gambling problem

Support, advice, counselling

How you can help someone with a gambling problem

Recovering from problem gambling isn't easy. It takes hard work and a lot of encouragement. Many people with gambling problems are able to turn their lives around because of support from people close to them.

We can help you provide this support with information and advice specifically suited to your situation.

Why can't they just stop?

When you don't have a gambling problem yourself, it can be difficult to understand why someone with a problem doesn't just stop.

Problem gambling has a similar effect on the brain as drug and alcohol addictions, which explains why just trying to stop isn't usually enough to make it happen. It also explains why many people have to try several times before successfully stopping. For more about the cycle of gambling, see Why do I gamble?

If someone close to you has a gambling problem, you can't change their behaviour or force them to stop, but you can help them. You can make it clear that their gambling is affecting others, that they need to get help, that there is help available, and that it works.

Family and friends icon

Family and friends

Read more about how we are putting families and friends at the forefront of our thinking in reducing harm caused by problem gambling.

Read the paper (PDF - 630 KB)