Gambling responsibly should be important to you and the people you care about. Responsible gambling means keeping the game in perspective, limiting your involvement so that it doesn’t negatively affect your job, mood, finances, relationships or self-esteem.
For many people, gambling is fun and entertaining. But for some, it’s a serious problem. Are you concerned about your gambling, or the gambling of someone you care about? Four questions aid in identifying gambling problems:
Have you ever failed to pay bills or repay debts because of gambling?
- Have people criticized your betting or told you that you had a gambling problem?
- Have you ever been untruthful about the extent of your gambling or hidden it from others?
- Have you ever tried to stop or cut back on how much or how often you gamble?
Answering “yes to any of these questions suggest you might have a gambling addiction. If you need it, help is available. If you think you or a loved one may have a gambling addiction you can call the National Council on Problem Gambling’s confidential 24-hour hotline: 800-522-4700.
HOW TO PLAY RESPONSIBLY
- Set a dollar limit. Identify a specific amount of money you can afford to lose and stop when that amount of money is gone. Consider any money you spend on gambling an entertainment cost.
- Never gamble with borrowed money.
- Set a time limit.
- Don’t gamble alone. Gamble socially with others while eating or enjoying other forms of entertainment.
- Set some of the winnings aside for other purposes.
- Avoid using alcohol or other drugs when gambling. They can affect your judgment and interfere with your adherence to your predetermined limits.