Call or Text the Maryland Problem Gambling Helpline: 1-800-GAMBLER

Help for Adults

Young Adults and Problem Gambling

People between the ages of 18-24 are at a high risk of developing gambling problems. The brain is still developing, and emotion and logic aren’t fully formed.  In addition, decision-making ability hasn’t yet matured, making young adults  more likely to take risks or act impulsively.  

Early warning signs of a gambling problem:

  • Skipping classes or work to gamble
  • Spending less time with Friends or avoiding family events to gamble
  • Lying about how much time and money is spent gambling
  • Poor nutrition, health and sleep
  • Borrowing and/or stealing money to gamble
  • Increased drinking and/or drug use
  • Thinking about gambling frequently

Adults and Problem Gambling

The Maryland Baseline Survey conducted in 2010 before the first casinos were opened in Maryland indicated 3.4% of adults in Maryland fit the criteria to be identified as problem gamblers, or 150,000 adults. The number in itself is not static so we are looking at a snapshot from 2010. The 150,000 adults represent a significant group of Marylanders. Imagine the M&T Ravens Football stadium filling to capacity, not once, but twice.

Who can become a problem gambler?

A problem gambler can be any age, gender, ethnicity, religion or socio-economic status. There are risk factors that can increase a person’s susceptibility to developing a gambling problem, such as a family history of problem gambling, a big win early in one’s gambling experience, loneliness, boredom, peer pressure, a history of substance abuse, and co-occurring disorders, such as depression or anxiety. Gambling becomes a problem when the person’s life is negatively impacted, causing conflicts in relationships with family members, friends or co-workers. Often people may not realize they have a gambling problem. Once aware of the gambling problem, a person’s feelings of shame, embarrassment or hopelessness may prevent them from seeking help. Finally, they may not know help is available or how to find it.

Gambling Problem Prevention Tips

Are you concerned that you or someone you know may have a gambling problem?

Take a self-evaluation to see if gambling behaviors are becoming a problem.

If you need help for yourself, a family member or friend

Call or Text

Call or text the Maryland Problem Gambling Helpline, a toll free service, for confidential assistance available 24 hours a day at

Get a Referral

Get a referral from the helpline to a Clinician across the state with expertise in problem gambling at NO COST to you.

Support Groups

Find out from the helpline about a referral to Gamblers’ Anonymous or Gam-Anon meetings. Or check out this link to Support Groups.

Peer Recovery

Have the Conversation with a Peer Recovery Support Specialist who can help you stop, limit or control your gambling and connect you with the resources you need.

Do you or someone you know have problems with gambling behavior? Help and Hope is available right now, it’s free, confidential and 24/7. 

Call or Text the Maryland Problem Gambling Helpline TODAY! (1-800-426-2537)

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