Gambling is the act of placing a bet, usually money, on an event that is determined by chance or accident. It may involve betting on sports games, horse races, or events that have a random outcome, such as the lottery. Some types of gambling are illegal in some jurisdictions. Gambling is an addictive behavior that affects people of all ages and social classes. It can cause major problems in a person’s life, such as financial ruin, credit issues and damaged relationships. It can also interfere with a person’s work and school performance.

Some people can stop gambling on their own, but others need help to overcome this disorder. There are several different kinds of therapy that can be used to treat gambling disorders, including cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), psychodynamic therapy, and group and family therapy. In some cases, medications are also used to treat co-occurring conditions, such as depression and anxiety.

The first step in overcoming a gambling problem is realizing that you have a problem. It takes tremendous strength and courage to admit this to yourself, especially if your addiction has caused you to lose large amounts of money and strain or break your relationships with loved ones. Getting help from a therapist can help you develop new coping skills and create healthy boundaries. You can also seek support from other gamblers in a peer-support group such as Gamblers Anonymous, or reach out to your local or national helpline.