Gambling involves wagering something of value on an event with a chance to win. While many people do gamble responsibly, others may overindulge and end up accumulating debts that impair their ability to support themselves or their families. In addition to monetary problems, gambling can also cause emotional and psychological issues that have long-term consequences. It is important for those who are concerned about their gambling habits to seek help and treatment before the problem escalates.

Gambling can provide financial benefits to local economies, especially when it is conducted in brick-and-mortar casinos or sportsbooks. These businesses require employees, from croupiers to security guards, and contribute to the economy of the cities where they are located. In addition, online casinos and sportsbooks employ a significant number of people worldwide.

Although the economic benefits of gambling are positive, it is important to recognize that some people have a gambling disorder that leads to destructive behavior. Symptoms of gambling disorders can include a lack of interest in other activities, lying to family and friends, hiding money, and spending more time on gambling than on other activities.

It is possible to overcome gambling disorders with help from a therapist. In-person therapy can help a person understand their gambling behavior and make changes. Online counseling services, such as BetterHelp, can match you with a therapist who is trained to treat gambling disorders and other behavioral addictions. BetterHelp offers a free assessment and can connect you with a therapist within 48 hours.