Responsible Gambling Guide
Gambling is an ancient type of entertainment that has been around for thousands of years, and right now, it seems that its popularity is not going to dwindle anytime soon. Though gambling is fun and even lucrative at times, it can also be quite dangerous. The problem with gambling is that it can be addictive and quite threatening to the wellbeing of an individual, which is never a good thing. Apart from obvious dangers like losing money in casino games, gambling can also inflict some detrimental effects upon the mental and physical health of the gamblers. For that reason, it is essential not to cross the line and remember that gambling is just entertainment and not a real way to make money.
Of course, some people get lucky and win some serious money, but those are few, and most people would lose more than they win. That is why you need to take gambling with a grain of salt and always remember that this path can lead to some serious problems that may change your life in a negative way. Today, we are going to take a look at the ways you can recognize the problem, stay in control of your desires, deal with possible signs of addiction, and the ways you can receive help.
How to Recognize the Problem
If you gamble yourself or know someone who gambles frequently, you could have noticed some alarming signs of gambling addiction. In most cases, it is really hard to admit your problem, and most people live in a state of denial, not willing to accept the fact they have a problem. If you are one of those people, you might have probably had your relatives or friends warning you about the problem already, and if you had, it is the first alarming sign of gambling addiction. Here’s the list of the warning signs you might have noticed, or at least, should have noticed:
Your Friends and Family Start to Worry
As said, it is easier to see the problem from the outside, which is why your friends and family might have already expressed their concerns about your gambling. Listen to what they say; they are right – you might be addicted already.
Gambling Consumes All of Your Thoughts
Do you think about gambling most of the time? Do you look forward to spending time at your favorite casino? Did you ever wish you were playing the game instead of spending time with your family and friends? If the answer is yes, you’ve got a problem. It is time to change your ways.
Your Financial Wealth Starts to Dwindle
Some people turn to casinos in hopes of winning a big jackpot, and most of those people already have some financial difficulties, to begin with. Others turn to the game as a way to just kick back and relax. In either case, this hobby can decrease your wealth considerably since most players lose more frequently than they win. If you feel like money has become a much bigger issue than before – you have a problem.
Your Mental Stability is Being Compromised
One of the main reasons while gambling is so popular is the adrenaline spike it gives. That sense of rush overloads your nervous system, it stimulates your brain, gives you that excitement mundane activities might lack. Similar to the drug addiction, gamblers start to seek more and more of that adrenaline rush, more of that excitement, which can produce some serious detriments upon your mental health.
Your Physical Health Worsened
Addicts of all sorts often disregard their physical needs and their health in favor of spending more money and more time on whatever is the source of their addiction. Some people even forfeit basic hygiene. If you feel like gambling is taking its toll on your health, it is time to stop.
How Can I Stay in Control?
Staying in control of addiction might be challenging, though it is possible if you follow the rules, establish the boundaries for yourself, and avoid redundant risks. Gambling is a kind of addiction that is purely psychological, which is why you can take control over it by being honest with yourself, setting up the rules, avoiding the pitfalls, and being in charge of all of your actions while playing. If you are new to gambling and just want to educate yourself on how to avoid falling into the shackles of addiction, you need to follow the rules. Here are some of the general recommendations on how you can avoid redundant risks and stay in control:
Set the Budget
All of us have different wallet sizes, and you need to evaluate your financial ability to sustain your gambling. If you are hell-bent for gambling and feel like you surely want to play, you need to set up a precise budget and stay within this budget at all times. Remember, there’s a much bigger chance of losing money than actually pulling off that huge jackpot, and that is why you need to know how much money you can afford to lose on a monthly or weekly basis without compromising your financial wealth. Calculate how much money you can afford to lose and never go above that.
Set Time Frames
Setting up the time frame is essential. How often do you want to play? It is best to play seldom, like once in two weeks or once in a month. Choose a day or two when you can go to your favorite casino and play the game. Never break the schedule and only play on those days.
Have a Clear Perception
Remember, gambling is entertainment, not a job or a lifestyle. Treat it as just a joyful pastime, nothing more. Let’s be frank here, your chances of winning big money and becoming a pro are minuscule, so don’t give in to illusions and just play the game for the fun of it.
Learn More about Your Casino and Games
Each casino has its own unique features, and you need to take those into account whenever you play your favorite games. Different casinos might have different wagering requirements, Return to Player rates, and all the little details about the games you play. To increase your chance of winning money, you’ve got to be good at your game, so you better educate yourself properly.
Set Your Priorities
Remember, gambling is just a hobby, it is not that important, and you should never put it above your family, friends, job, and social life. You need to always remember what really matters in life and pay attention to the important things before you play the game. This is the main rule here – never put gambling above all the things in life that really matter.
Responsible Gambling Tips
If you do decide to gamble, you need to remember some of the essential rules. Apart from setting up the rules for yourself, you need to remember about some smart way you can avoid losing too much. These are simple yet effective rules that allow you to stay cold-minded, enjoy the game, and not lose too much money. Remember, the casino wins anyway, and even if you win from time to time, the casino will do anything to take away your money and make you lose eventually. To avoid such a sad scenario, you need to follow the general guidelines gamblers around the world came up with over the decades:
The casino is Just an Entertainment
As said before, only a handful of people wins big money in a casino while others lose. Chances are that you are going to be the one to pull off that huge win, but most likely, you are going to be one of the millions of people who lose money on a daily basis. You have to remember that the casino is not a real way to make money, so you should always treat it as nothing more than just a fun way to spend some time.
Only Bet What You Can Afford to Lose
You have to set up a budget for your casino time and never go beyond that. If you feel like you are nearing the bottom line, just quit the game. Losing more than you can afford leads to serious and sad consequences. Those who cannot control their gambling end up borrowing money from friends, sell whatever they can to make up for their losses, and turn to some shady activities just to make some extra cash to go and play again.
Always Play Sober
Never play intoxicated as the alcohol makes you lose control over your thoughts and actions, which is especially dangerous when it comes to playing for real money. Did you notice how casinos give free drinks to the players? Well, they want you to get drunk and start betting and losing more and more money.
Never Chase the Loses
Losing money is always a bad thing, and sometimes you might get that feeling that one more game will turn the tide in your favor. It won’t. You are going to lose more. If you go past your limit, just walk away and play another time.
How Can I Seek Help?
If you feel like gambling has taken over your life, you need to seek help and change your ways. The first and the safest harbor you need to turn to is your family. If you are lucky to have a loving family, you already won your biggest jackpot, and you need nothing but the love of your family to heal from gambling addiction.
Sometimes, though, the love and care might not be enough. Some addicts are so deep into their disruptive lifestyle, they need special treatment. Looking for help at the right time is the best idea, so you should totally turn to the social organizations that help addicts of all sorts if you have this problem. There’s no shame in asking for help, and if you feel like people are going to look down on you, you are wrong. In fact, the very act of recognizing the issue and taking serious steps to deal with it is brave and deserves respect. Here, we have a list of organizations that provide help to gambling addicts across Canada.
Local Canadian Organizations
Alberta. Alberta Health Services.
Alberta addiction helpline is totally free for everyone, and you can seek help from casino addiction in their canter.
Call 1-866-332-2322 for addiction support.
British Columbia. British Columbia Partnership for Responsible Gambling
Located in British Columbia, this organization helps gamblers to avoid redundant risks and deal with the addiction problems by putting their lives back on the rail.
Call 1-888-795-6111 for addiction support.
Manitoba. Addictions Foundation in Manitoba
The Addictions Foundation of Manitoba helps all addicts, including casino addicts. If you have a problem, just contact this organization for quality help.
Call 1-855-662-6605 for addiction support.
New Brunswick. New Brunswick Health
Located in New Brunswick, this organization aims to improve the health of the population. This also includes helping the addicts.
Call 1-800-461-1234 for addiction support.
Newfoundland. Newfoundland Labrador Health and Community Services
This organization is also concerned with the issues of public health in Newfoundland which also includes helping people suffering from all sorts of addictions.
Call 1-877-999-7589 for addiction support.
Northwest Territories. NWT Health and Social Services
This social services organization targets all sorts of social issues. The gambling addiction center focuses on providing help to people who have problems with casino games.
Call 1-800-661-0844 for addiction support.
Nova Scotia. Problem Gambling Help Line
The Help Line provides help for people whose lives have been impacted by gambling in a severely negative way.
Call 1-888-347-8888 for addiction support.
Nunavut. Nunavut Health and Social Services
This organization located in Nunavut targets different social issues, including the problem of addiction.
Call 1-800-265-3333 for addiction support.
This Ontario-based organization targets mental health issues that impact the population. This also includes a casino addiction problem.
Call 1-866-531-2600 for addiction support.
Prince Edward Island. Health PEI Gambling Addiction Services
Here, you can receive quality counseling and health care services if your life has been impacted by addiction.
Call 1-855-255-4255 for addiction support.
Quebec. Gambling: Help and Referral
This organization specifically targets the problems of gambling addicts in Quebec, so if you live there and feel like you might need some help – hit them up.
Call 1-800-461-0140 for addiction support.
Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan Health — Gambling
Here, you can seek help from gambling and other kinds of addiction.
Call 1-306-787-7239 for addiction support.
Yukon Territory. Yukon Health and Social Services
If you need some help with your disruptive addiction, you can receive free help here.
Call 1-800-661-0408 for addiction support.
Gambling is a precarious activity that can be either fun and lucrative or threatening and destructive. Playing responsibly is the key to having a good time and not compromising your well-being. Setting up the rules, educating yourself, and following the general guidelines is the way to enjoy the game without risking all the things that really matter in life. The games should never interfere with your lifestyle, your relations with family and friends, your career, and your social life. Stay in charge, never let the game control you, and you are going to have a great time.