Gambling should always be seen as a source of entertainment. Because that’s what it truly is. It becomes a problem when a player starts to see it as a source of income. And that problem keeps developing until it becomes something serious that the player can’t walk away from.
But all hope is not lost. There are responsible gambling programs that exist to help players who have serious gambling problems. These programs work to help people out of their gambling problems and lead healthy and stable lives.
Responsible gambling was created to stop players from spending carelessly. It makes gamblers practice certain choices and spending habits to stop them from relapsing into addiction once again.
That’s what we’re here to talk about today. We’ll be looking at responsible gambling, what it is, how you can identify it, where you can get help for it, and how different casinos have responsible gambling tools to help players. Let’s not waste any more time and get right into it.
What is Responsible Gambling?
As we mentioned in the beginning, gambling should be purely a source of entertainment. The moment a gambler tries to change that into a source of income that’s the exact moment they begin their descent into addiction.
Responsible gambling is a set of practices that helps with problem gambling. Things like taking a break, or setting limits on the amount of money you can afford to lose and the time you spend playing.
Setting limiters seems to be easier online than in land-based casinos. This is due to the fact that there are a lot of tools that exist online to help limit your spending habits and playtime. Operators also take notice of the fact and warn players with notifications to take a break. This is what responsible gambling casinos suggest.
Responsible is the exact opposite of problem gambling. Where problem gambling ruins a person’s life by wasting money, responsible gambling tools seek to drag gamblers out of their problem gambling addictions.
It is in the nature of gambling to be risky. Without taking risks it’s highly unlikely that you can win big. But gamblers need to draw the line between taking risks and being irresponsible with their money.
How to Recognize Problem Gambling/Addiction
It’s important to know how to identify if someone has a gambling problem. You should also be informed about it if you want to steer clear of any gambling-related issues. Let’s take a look at some of the common signs of problem gambling.
Spending More Than Intended
If a gambler is spending excessively more than their allocated bankroll it’s a sure sign of problem gambling. Spending a little more than your set bankroll is enough if you’re willing to take a little risk. But going too overboard is when you enter the territory of problem gambling.
Wasting time is also a sign of problem gambling. If a gambler is spending all of their time thinking about gambling, then it’s an early sign that it might develop into an addiction.
Illegally Obtaining Money for Gambling
If an individual is trying to get money for gambling through illegal means, then that’s a really good sign that he/she has a problem with gambling. Not only will you be losing money, but it’s also illegal and you’re going to get into trouble for it.
Lack of a Social Life
If all a person does is gamble all day without making time for friends and family, then it’s a sign of problem gambling. People like this are never interested in any other topic other than gambling and how to make more money.
Getting Loans for Gambling
If someone feels the need to borrow money from others to gamble, then that person has developed a gambling addiction. This is dangerous as not only will that person be in debt, but they will also face problems until the debt is paid.
Where to Get Help for Gambling Problems
If you or someone you know is a victim of gambling addiction then you need to get help. You should know that there are responsible gambling help centers for players all across the United States.
National Council on Problem Gambling
The responsible gambling council in the United States is known as the National Council on Problem Gambling (NCPG). They have a helpline that’s active 24 hours and takes calls from anywhere in the US.
There are also text and online chat services for those who don’t prefer calling. Anyone who has a problem with gambling can contact the responsible gambling council and will be pointed towards help. They offer their services all over the US across 50 states, so don’t hesitate to call if you need it.
How to Get in Touch with NCPG
Aside from the NCPG, there are 6 federal hotlines whom you can contact for help with online gambling addiction. Here is the list of those helplines.
Responsible Gambling on Online Casinos
In online casinos, it’s easier to practice responsible gambling habits than anywhere else. Since there are a lot of built-in tools it’s easier to control yourself by taking help from those. Some of the best online casinos have built-in tools for responsible gambling purposes.
Casinos would obviously profit if players spent more money. But they are also responsible for keeping players in check. This is because if they don’t do it, they might have to get in trouble with the gambling commission.
Also, if a player suffers from gambling addiction and decides to quit because they were not stopped, the casino loses a player, possibly permanently. That’s why some casinos take it upon themselves to implement responsible gambling tools into their interface to help players out.
But none of these tools is forced on the players. They are voluntary tools that anyone can choose to wish. Since a gambler has complete freedom in a casino, there’s no obligation to use these tools. But online casinos will still suggest their use because they care.
So, what are some of the popular tools for responsible gambling? Let’s take a look at the most popular ones that are used in casinos.
Casinos make use of something called deposit limits to help players control the amount of money that they’re going to spend in the casino. When a player keeps losing and runs out of money in their account, they’re going to look to add more. With the help of this tool, it’s possible to limit the amount deposited over a certain period of time.
There are time limits that will help you set the limiter on deposits. You can set a daily, weekly, or even monthly limit. Basically, what this indicates is that it’s the most amount of money that you’ll be allowed to spend during that time. When you run out of limits, you can’t deposit anymore and you’ll have to wait it out.
This deposit limit is not set by the casino. Rather it’s the player who will set them. Think about how much you can afford to lose and set your limit based on that.
Just like the name suggests, a loss limit is a tool that stops you from losing any more by restricting your access to the games. It is especially handy for players who can’t compose themselves when losing and end up spending a lot of money.
Once your losses hit the limit, you will be restricted from playing any more for the day or week. This will depend on how you set the loss limiter. There are loss limits for specific games as well as a loss limit overall on the casino.
Session Limits/ Time Alerts
This is another tool that comes in handy when you’re playing at the casino. By setting a session timer you are able to control the amount of time you allow yourself to spend at the casino. You can set this as a weekly timer. But it’s best if you set the timer to daily for maximum effectiveness.
Wagering limits is something that comes as a part of many games. Rather than being a separate tool, it’s integrated into the games themselves. Put simply, a wagering limit will put a restriction on the maximum amount you’re allowed to bet in a single round.
Wagering limits can also be placed on the entire session where you won’t be allowed to bet over a fixed total amount. It’s particularly helpful for players who are overconfident and end up betting more than they can afford.
Self-exclusion helps out when players start to go off the rails. When a gambler realizes that their spending habits are getting out of control and want to take a break, the self-exclusion tool comes into play.
Like any other addiction, it’s quite easy to slip back into the habit. The self-exclusion tool helps to restrict any kind of access to the casino for a certain period of time. By cutting yourself off completely, you can start to get away from problem gambling and return to a normal flow in your life.
Self-assessment is more of a quiz or a questionnaire if you will. The questions in this self-assessment are set by the casino. These questions are targeted to help players find out whether or not they have a gambling problem. Not only casinos, but you can also find self-assessment quizzes on the responsible gambling helplines as well.
Make a self-assessment test at NCPG’c website.
The transaction history is something that comes by default with all casinos. It contains details of all the wins, losses, deposits, and withdrawals that a gambler makes. Transaction history doesn’t do anything directly for responsible gambling. It’s up to the player to make use of history to keep track of his/her spending habits.
Tips for Playing Responsibly
We care about all of our players which is why we think it’s up to us to recommend some tips to all of our players.
You can’t force someone out of gambling. That tactic never works and even if it does, it doesn’t end well. This is why there are some gambling tips that players can follow if they want to stop developing a gambling problem.
Budget, Time, and Money
Like we said before, set a personal limit for yourself. This goes for both money and time. You should decide how long you’re going to stay at the casino before you start playing. You should also set the amount of money that you’ll be spending and stick to it.
Gamble Only Money You Can Afford to Lose
If you want to gamble but don’t have enough money for it, then don’t. No one’s going to shame you for it. But if you borrow money to gamble, keep in mind you’ll have to pay it back. If you lose that money gambling, your losses get doubled. Better not to put yourself in this situation in the first place.
Don’t Gamble to Make Yourself Feel Good
If you are stressed out with your job or for personal reasons don’t look to gambling. Similar to drinking, you can’t drown your problems in a casino game. Gamble only when you have a fresh mind that’s capable of thinking clearly to take smart decisions.
Don’t Chase Your Losses
If you’ve had a particularly bad day and lost a lot of money, don’t try to recover it by playing more. Learn to walk away when you’ve lost and convince yourself that you just had a case of bad luck. Chasing to recover your losses isn’t going to help you.
Don’t Chase Big Wins
When you’re playing a game at the casino always be sure that you’re in control of how you’re spending and how much you’re betting. Games often have prompts that urge you to bet just a little bit more.
It’s important to keep in mind, that the games are controlled by software and you are your own person. So, whenever you get the slightest hint that things can go out of hand, stop immediately. Not chasing after a big win is the smartest thing that you can do.
Here are some commonly asked questions about responsible gambling. Please check them out if you have similar queries.