Gambling Problem Q&A

Gambling Problem Q&A

Find out where you can get timely help for you or a friend, when suspecting a developing gambling problem or addiction. What to look out for and who to call.

Having the answers are an important step for helping a friend rise up from a hard time and a gambling problem. Consult these answers and find out who to consult for further help and assistance.

Are periodic gambling binges really a problem?

Gambling binges can have devastating repercussions and they are certainly a problem. If these periods of gambling binges lead to irascible conduct, tension, instability and emotional upheaval, they are problematic indeed. The goal is not to binge, but to gamble responsibly.

Are there unethical online casinos operating?

There may well be online casinos operating which do not conform to the high levels of trust and integrity that have come to be expected by online players. Before one commences gaming it is prudent to select only from a list of reputable online casino operators to avoid the inevitable problems that may emerge from gaming with a lesser known and potentially sketchy operator. Do a little homework on your chosen online casino first, that way you will avoid many problems.

Can a compulsive gambler ever gamble normally again?

Absolutely not and that's the definitive answer. Compulsive gamblers are akin to drug addicts or alcoholics - they simply have to go cold turkey in order not to relapse. These folks need to be kept away from gambling and the rush of irrational conduct that it evokes in them.

Do Gamblers Anonymous members go into casinos to help former members who are still gambling?

The fact of the matter is that asking for help is a personal call. GA members do not go out on missions to assist former members who have 'fallen off the wagon.' The goal is to personally want treatment and then to take the next step and implement the lifestyle changes.

Does the casino ask for my personal information?

Responsible online casino operators today need to verify that it is indeed you who is deciding to gamble at their casino. It is extremely important for several reasons that players are who they claim to be. Reasons include verification of legal gambling age, identity verification and payments-related concerns. Personal information includes an e-mail address, location, payment details and agreement to all terms and conditions upon entering the online casino. This is done to protect the player and the online casino.

How can I help myself?

Seek help or counseling from a professional gambling help service such as those listed here or talk to someone you know and trust.

How can you tell you are a compulsive gambler?

This is a personal call, but one that certainly must be made. Once an admission has been noted, it is imperative that an organization such as Gamblers Anonymous is contacted. Signs of compulsive gambling include an inability to focus on normal daily routines due to gambling addiction. Others include excessive wagering, uncapped bankrolls and irrational conduct which lead to emotional, financial and social turmoil.

How do I know I can trust an online casino?

Online casinos - like all sites that receive and make payments - have varying degrees of safeness. All the online casinos listed on OCR are legally registered entities operating under the jurisdiction of lawful gambling codes. Multiple gambling authorities such as eCOGRA safe and secure gaming certification, Gamcare and others are consumer watchdogs which police online casinos, thus offering players peace of mind as to which operators are trustworthy and safe to gamble at.

How do I know if an online casino is a responsible gaming advocate?

Players who have been gaming at online casinos are already well-versed in the details of their chosen online casino operator. However for newcomers this is not so obvious. Players should always consult with reliable information when deciding on which gambling operator to play at. For a list of responsible gaming online casinos players are strongly advised to select from the following online casino inventory. These online casinos are fully licensed, registered and responsible gaming advocates.

How do I recognize the signs of a gambling addiction?

Some tell tale signs that you might be addicted to gambling include whether you try to hide the amount that you are spending, you choose to gamble over spending time with your family, you are not paying household bills on time or if you are taking out personal loans or have huge cash advances on your credit card.

How much does it cost to join Gamblers Anonymous?

Gamblers Anonymous is a self-sufficient entity which declines external contributions. Compulsive gamblers joining GA are not required to pledge anything or sign any documentation. There are however expenses incurred in the daily operation of the meetings and services offered. All expenses are provided for with voluntary financial support by the members.

If I join Gamblers Anonymous won't everyone know I'm seeking treatment?

The purpose of therapy is treatment and then recovery. There are a great many compulsive gamblers who draw a considerable amount of attention to themselves as gamblers. Treatment conversely is a private issue and one which is not flagrantly splashed about. Therefore the goal is rehabilitation from an illness, not publicity. And it is Gamblers Anonymous after all.

Is gambling addictive and is it related to other addictions?

Gambling can certainly become addictive. The thrill of the bright lights, the fast-paced entertainment and the prospect of winning are powerful pull factors. In moderation gambling is nothing more than a fun-filled pastime. But when taken to extremes, gambling can be extremely addictive. There have been multiple studies conducted which show that there is a direct correlation between alcohol and substance abuse in addition to compulsive gambling behaviour. These vices all fall under the gamut of irrational and irresponsible conduct, often with devastating repercussions.

What are the steps to overcoming a gambling addiction?

The most important step to overcoming a gambling addiction is recognizing that there is a gambling problem in the first place. Recovery is possible if gamblers adhere to a simple, but stringent framework of support and ongoing therapy. Gamblers Anonymous offers an effective twelve-step recovery program. Another option is cognitive-behavioural therapy. This focuses on changing unhealthy gambling conduct and false perceptions. More importantly is the post-therapy period. It is during this time that all temptation must be removed and a healthy, balanced and responsible lifestyle adopted.

What is compulsive gambling?

Compulsive gambling is otherwise known as pathological gambling. This is a very serious gambling disorder and is characterized by an acute inability to stop gambling, even when one recognizes that gambling is causing serious problems. These may include family, relationship, financial or other maladies. It has been noted that compulsive gambling is tantamount in severity to severe alcohol and drug addiction. These types of gamblers are uninhibited and often resort to pathological methods in order to feed their habit.

What is problem gambling?

Problem gambling' is the term used to describe someone's strong urge to gamble despite the harmful consequences and disruption to their life and those around them or even their desire to stop gambling.

What is the first thing a compulsive gambler ought to do in order to stop gambling?

As with all therapy, the 'patient' must first recognize that there is a severe underlying problem. It is incumbent upon the compulsive gambler to take the initiative. The malady must be recognized and then treated. Several successful programs including the Gamblers Anonymous program are effective in dealing with this illness. Note that this illness cannot be cured, but it can be stopped in its tracks, thus allowing the person to lead a healthy and focussed life.

What should I do if someone I know has a gambling problem?

You should talk to the person and tell them how their problem is affecting you and encourage them to regain control in their life. Understand that someone with a gambling problem will not change their behavior until they believe themselves that they need to change.

When is the best time to play at an online casino?

Unlike regular bricks and mortar casinos, online casinos operate in a virtual environment with online players from all over the world. This means that the physical presence of a player in one specific time-zone is not required. As such, there will always be high levels of players present, provided that the online casino has a broad global reach. For online casinos specifically targeted to geographic areas, the levels of activity may show peaks and troughs respectively.

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