Guide To Problem Gambling

Across the world, millions of people are plagued with gambling addiction. Gambling can be an exhilarating and thrilling experience. However, the fun can turn sour if your money runs dry and you’re going into debt for you to be able to keep playing.

Whether you’re a regular player at a land casino, an online casino or just play poker on a regular basis, think about the following; are you able to stop yourself from placing down another twenty? What about a fifty? One hundred? If not, then you might need help. Here are five ways you can know that you need to seek help for a gambling addiction.

1. You are Unable to Set a Limit and Stick to it.

Before you even walk into a casino, have you already spent all of your chips and then some? Decide whether you want to break even or if you’re OK losing the cash on hand. If you can’t do that and continue to draw from the ATM machine or ask to borrow money to continue playing, you most likely have a problem.

2. Your Friends and Family Worry About You.

Before you even walk into a casino, have you already spent all of your chips and then some? Decide whether you want to break even or if you’re OK losing the cash on hand. If you can’t do that and continue to draw from the ATM machine or ask to borrow money to continue playing, you most likely have a problem.

3. You Borrow Money or Use a Paycheck Cashing Service to Get Cash for Gambling.

It’s common for the gambling addict to go to a paycheck cashing service or small loans place to get money to play at the casino because they’ve run out of the money they had. This is a sign of a severe problem, because before you know it, you could be thousands of dollars in debt and not even realize it. When you have cash on hand, think about your immediate needs first. Gambling is not a solution to make money and meet those needs.

4. You Keep Gambling More Money to Try and Recoup Your Losses.

When you believe that you’re about to hit a winning streak after a loss streak, this is known as the “gambler’s fallacy” and it is the downfall of many a gambler. You’ll want to remember that if you’re down to your last penny, you’re unlikely to get all the money you lost back. Spending more money at the slots, or drawing more money from the ATM machine to put on the craps table is unlikely to make that happen.

5. You Lie About Your Habit

Do you ever try to hide your gambling from family and friends? Do you stash money away and go to the casino without your spouse knowing? If so, you’re in dangerous territory. Lying often about a habit is a clear sign of addiction and will cause further problems down the road. People will lose trust in you as a person. You may even lose your friends and family if you don’t stop before it’s too late.

Problem Gambling Resources

So, now you know the signs of gambling addiction, but how do you take the next step to stop it? There are numerous organizations that are there to help you.

1. National Council of Problem Gambling

The NCPG is a group that works to help change policies and protect gamblers in the United States. They also offer a national hotline, which you can call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. On their website, they offer resources on a state by state basis, so you can find a local treatment center near you.

Website:www.ncpgambling.org

Phone Number: 1-800-522-4700

2. Algamaus Recovery Centers

Algamus is a residential treatment center for gambling addiction. They offer rehabilitation for those who are in very serious trouble with their addiction. Located in Prescott, AZ, the Algamus Centers have staff on hand ready to help you overcome your addiction and find freedom. The highly trained staff uses the most effective treatment methods and services.

Website:www.algamus.org

Phone Number: 1-888-669-2437

3. Gambler Anonymous

Gamblers Anonymous started in 1957 and has been a source of hope to many with gambling addiction. It’s free, open to anyone and there are many meetings across the nation. The goal is to help the person recognize their gambling problem and to overcome the pride that comes with the gambling addiction. You can even call to get a hold of someone right now in order to get immediate help.

Website:www.gamblersanonymous.org

Phone Number: 1-626-960-3500

Tips for Avoiding Gambling Addiction

1. Don't Gamble Alone

If you go out to the casino with someone, have them keep you accountable to a spending limit. They can also help remind you that you’re playing the slots and the tables to have fun.

2. Set a Spending Limit and Stick to it

Whether you’re playing at a land casino or putting money down at an online casino, it can be helpful to use a prepaid credit card to help cap your spending limit. Many online casinos will take a prepaid credit card with no problem.

3. Remember You're There to Have Fun

Gambling is a very fun activity. It’s thrilling and nail-biting. It can make you feel high as a kite or low as a stone, but if you have an even head, you can recognize that these feelings are all part of the experience. Taking it too seriously can begin to cause anger and resentment, not only when you’re playing the games, but with the people in your own life. Just relax, have fun and enjoy the ride.

4. Avoid the Gambler's Fallacy

The gambler’s fallacy is when a person believes that because they’ve had a long losing streak, this streak will come to an end soon and they will again have luck. The problem is that this is a statistical impossibility. You have a 50% chance of winning or losing in each game you play. Remember that even when you have a losing streak, this doesn’t guarantee you won’t continue to lose.