Free, confidential counseling for problem gamblers.
Free help is just a phone call away for problem gamblers and those whose lives are affected by problem gambling. Last year, the statewide problem gambling helpline, 1-800-GAMBLER (426-2567), received more than 4,000 calls from people with gambling problems. By calling the helpline, gamblers and family members negatively affected by problem gambling are referred to a counselor for free and confidential counseling to end problem gambling behaviors. The counseling is available over the phone or in person, and is for California residents 18 years and older.
Help is available in 27 different languages. There are more than 200 counselors offering eight sessions throughout California. You can find counselors in your area at the Office of Problem Gambling website www.problemgambling.ca.gov.
There are also two residential treatment programs in California. The Northern California program, Health Right 360, is in San Francisco and can be reached by calling (415) 762-3705. Los Angeles-based Beit T'Shuvah serves the southern portion of the state and can be reached at (310) 204-5200. Clients in inpatient care live at the facility and receive treatment for 30 days.
Treatment changes lives! Here is what one problem gambler said about life before and after counseling:
"It's been almost a year since I first started my therapy sessions, not knowing what to expect. I felt I had all the answers and really didn't need any 'therapy.' I didn't have a gambling problem, I thought, I can stop at any time. In reality, I was turning into a different person. I became numb to life around me, not to mention my relationship to life. I gave no thought to the price I was paying. With therapy, I learned how to gain control. The numbness is not completely gone,
but I can feel life around me. I finally have money
in my pocket, instead of losing it at a casino."
Problem gambling treatment helps repair shattered lives and restore devastated families. If you think you have a gambling problem, or you know someone who does, now is the time to get help. Free treatment starts by calling 1-800-GAMBLER (426-2567) or by visiting www.problemgambling.ca.gov.
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