How to Avoid Falling into Gambling Addiction?

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Gambling has been a part of human nature since before written history even began. People have always looked for ways to wager but it can become a problem when someone doesn’t know how to stop. What are the signs to look out for and the things to avoid?

Set a Limit

The first step to responsibly enjoying gambling is to set a sensible playing budget. You might decide to move across a fixed amount for the week or month, to your casino account. This should be the full budget you have for that period, meaning that you aren’t tempted to add more funds.   

Some online casinos let you set your own deposit limits that you can’t go over. You might also be able to temporarily opt out using the self-exclusion option, so that you are unable to play at all during a set period. All good casinos have a responsible gambling section where you can find out more about these things.

Never Bet More Than You Can Afford to Lose

One of the biggest mistakes that people make is in betting more money than they should. This might be because of a feeling that they are about to get a big win, or because they lose track of what they have wagered so far. Casino games have a random outcome and can’t guarantee you will win money. In fact, the house edge means that there will be more people who will lose than the number of players that will win.

The previous step in setting your limits should cover this point too, if you do it well. Just think about how much you can afford to play with while having fun. If the thought of losing that amount causes you worries, then you are probably playing with too much money. In those cases where it feels too difficult to cut back, it is time to look for some expert help.

Money on money – Photo by: – Source: Flickr Creative Commons

Don’t Chase Losses

Another common issue is that of chasing losses. This is one of the clearest signs of a gambling problem, and it sometimes follows on from the previous points. If you wager more than you can afford to lose, you could end up feeling that you need to increase your wager. This could eventually lead to bigger problems as you carry on trying to win back your losses.

Any win that you grab in these games should feel very welcome, but you shouldn’t feel too upset about any losses you have along the way. If you lose more than you should have wagered, treat this as a warning about the risks of not taking the issue seriously enough and consider how to avoid it happening again in the future.  

Don’t Use Gambling as an Escape

One of the signs that someone may have a gambling issue is when they play these games as a means of escaping from their everyday problems. Whether they want to block out financial worries, relationship concerns, or anything else, this is the wrong reason to play any games, either if it’s roulettes, slots or casino war.

Casinos offer fun places to try and win some money on games with a random outcome. That’s all they should be: fun. So, if you ever feel that you are not enjoying yourself but getting stressed instead, it’s time to stop before it turns into an addiction.

If you try to use these sites to make you feel better about other things in life, it could lead to gambling addiction. You might notice that you become irritable or restless when you aren’t gambling, which suggests that it is no longer just a fun activity that adds some entertainment to your life. If you think that you are at risk in any of these areas, you should seek assistance from any of the recognized gambling help associations such as the National Council on Problem Gambling or Gamblers Anonymous. These organizations can help you to deal with the issues you are facing. 

Article edited and fact checked by our editorial team


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