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Problem Gambling

Gambling opportunities are all around us. Learn how to reduce/prevent harm and access treatment for problem gambling in New York.
Understanding Problem Gambling

Gambling opportunities are all around us: lottery/scratch-off tickets, sports betting, casinos, horse betting, bingo, even raffles and office pools. Known as the “hidden addiction” because there are almost no visible signs, problem gambling or gambling disorder is typically uncovered following some negative consequence (breakdown in relationship, exhausted options to borrow money, an inability to pay debts, etc.). A recent survey concluded more than two-thirds of adults in New York do not gamble at all; around 4 percent are at risk and less than 1 percent are problem gamblers.

Individuals with problem gambling or gambling disorder respond well to evidenced-based cognitive behavioral therapy that focuses specifically on cognitions that fuel gambling behavior. In addition, treatment can involve building on skills to manage personal and environmental triggers, such as an advertisement or a memory. Individuals may use a variety of pathways to connect to care within New York's gambling treatment network or continuum.

Reducing Risk and Harms:

  • Talk to young people about the risks and consequences of engaging in underage gambling activities, it helps shape the choices they make as adults.
  • Have a plan before you gambleSet limits on the amount of time and money spent gambling. Take frequent breaks.
  • Avoid drug/alcohol use while gambling and only gamble when you have a positive outlook—not in an attempt to escape from feelings of stress, loneliness or depression.
  • Create safe, gambling-free environments to set young people up for success. Parents/caregivers, educators and employers can all take steps to prevent underage and problem gambling.
Prevention, Treatment and Responsible Play
Prevention & Responsible Play

Steps you can take to prevent problem gambling and reduce gambling harms at home and in your community. Learn about responsible play, browse tips for talking to young people, and find a problem gambling prevention provider.

Treatment Options

How to access problem gambling treatment services, referrals and supports in New York State. If you are already familiar with our treatment continuum, you may choose to search for a certified problem gambling provider near you from the certified provider and program directory.

Treatment & Referrals

OASAS is here to help individuals make informed decisions about their care. The diagram below represents the multiple points of entry an individual can utilize to access problem gambling information, support, and treatment in New York State. The treatment continuum includes outpatient and inpatient gambling treatment services from OASAS-certified programs and approved private practitioners.

This diagram shows the flow of the problem gambling continuum as follows: Problem Gambling Resource Centers and/or Recovery Center may provide referrals to both certified programs and private practitioners in your area. The HOPEline will direct you to a Problem Gambling Center near you. All three - Problem Gambling Resource Centers, Recovery Centers and the 24/7 HOPEline - provide community education, information, and support.
Enlarge the diagram of the Continuum

Connect to Care


Gambling Specialty Designation (GSD)
Become a Problem Gambling Counselor

Qualified Problem Gambling Professionals are addiction professionals who can document either a minimum of one year of experience in the treatment and/or clinical research of problem gambling, or who have completed the required problem gambling training.

If you are a CASAC, CPP or CPS in good standing and are interested in providing problem gambling services, you may apply for the Problem Gambling Specialty Designation credential to work in problem gambling.

In addition to the required 60-hour and 30-hour core curriculum for CASAC and CPS/CPPs respectively, OASAS offers additional learning opportunities to obtain credit for the Designation.

NY Responsible Play Partnership Webinar

Mobile Sports Wagering

The NY Responsible Play Partnership hosted a webinar for addiction service providers to cover recent expansions of gambling opportunities in New York, including mobile sports wagering. We discuss the safeguards put in place to protect individuals, as well as the prevention, treatment, and recovery resources available to New Yorkers who have experienced gambling harms.

Educational Materials
Increasing Public Awareness
OASAS has a number of digital and print materials related to problem gambling and addiction. Use these materials to encourage and engage in meaningful conversations about addiction and prevention at home, in school or on social media.