META: Take a look at our tips to make sure you’re playing only when it’s fun.
It’s important for every online gambling player to practice responsible gambling. Gambling addiction has been known to create a lot of negative effects that affect your finances, your relationship, your health and more.
But there is a way to enjoy your slots, bingo, live dealer casino games, and more in safety. Take a look at our tips to make sure you’re playing only when it’s fun.
Spot the signs
According to The Priory Group, visible signs of gambling addiction can take the form of:
- Compulsive urges to gamble, even when the risk is too high
- Lack of concentration in the workplace
- A preoccupation with gambling
- A loss of interest in other hobbies and aspects of life, like family and friends
- Increasing the amount you’re gambling to increase the thrill
- A negative impact on relationships
Limit your time
There are a lot of tools in modern online casinos that will allow you to set limits on your time on the online casino. Have you noticed that there are no clocks in real world casinos? You don’t have to worry about missing the time of day or spending too much time on the online casino websites. You can just set a timer and only play as long as the timer allows you. The time limiter on these websites will then kick you out, so you don’t get the option to ignore it like your morning alarm.
Limit your energy
One thing that might be a sign that you’re gambling too much would be the fact that so much time has passed. The sun might have set, the day might have gone by and you might be walking away from your seat realising how exhausted you feel. Maybe it’s time to set some breaks. If you gamble with some time outs scheduled in, you can perhaps avoid the hangover of spending too much time on the live dealer casinos and realise that you’ve had enough once you’ve taken a break.
Limit your loss
You can even place limits on how much you lose when playing your favourite games. It means you are forced to stop playing when you’ve lost so much, rather than thinking that one more go will be the winning one. One more go can turn into a lot more. It also means you are sticking to only gambling what you can afford. By setting a loss limit, you play what you can afford, and you stop once that is lost, rather than reaching into alternative sources of money like bank accounts and savings accounts for another little bit of money.
Limit your deposit
Another way to make sure you’re only playing with what you can afford is to set a deposit limit on your casino games. You can set a limit to only deposit what you can afford and therefore only play what you can afford. Once that limit is reached, you’re done and you can go with whatever winnings you’ve got with the limited amount you put in.
Talk to someone
If you are worried that you can see casino gambling is spilling out into other aspects of your life, you might consider talking to someone about it. Supportive staff at the end of a hotline can talk you through setting boundaries, coming to terms with whether or not you have a problem, and how to get further help. Or they can simply be someone to talk to in trying times.
You can contact GamCare on 0808 8020 133, Gamblers Anonymous via gamblersanonymous.org.uk, GamStop at gamstop.co.uk or The Samaritans at samaritans.org.
Sometimes you need a more drastic move to keep away from the online casino. You can take all the breaks you want, but if you’re seeing a pattern of just waiting out the time and getting right back into your favourite game, it’s time for a longer break. Self-exclusion features will force you to not access the casino website for 6 months. That might be difficult to begin with, but over time, hopefully it’ll get easier, to the point that you forget it.
When the fun stops, stop
You should never go into gambling seeing it as a money-making endeavour. It’s supposed to be a bit of fun, where the fun comes from the shock of winning. There is no fun if you go into gambling treating it like work. Winning will feel like a fair wage for a hard day’s work, rather than a reward. And gambling is not a sustainable business plan. If it feels like clocking into the office when you open your laptop to play casino games, stop.