What Are The Tell-Tale Signs of Gambling Addiction?
Just like with alcoholic drinks or other vices, there are clear signs of gambling addiction. These include things like:
- Insatiable need to gamble and constantly finding ways to acquire gambling money
- Constantly increasing the maximum bet amount to get the same thrill
- Inability to quit
- Lying to loved ones about gambling
- Trying to compensate gambling losses by gambling more
If you have experienced any of the above-mentioned gambling problems you might have a problem. Fortunately, all is not lost because there are many things you can do to turn your addiction into a fun pastime again.
Gambling problems are many but the road to recovery is all the same. First of all, great job for trying to find a solution. Secondly, you aren’t in this alone. As money games and gambling in general keep evolving, it’s no surprise that many people are experiencing problem gambling. Luckily, there are various solutions to curb the negative effects.
What is the Responsible Gambling Council?
The Responsible Gambling Council (RGC) is a non-profit organization that’s committed to helping people make healthy and informed choices about their favourite pastime. The Responsible Gambling Council members provide treatment, direct hotline assistance, links to various responsible gambling programs, and promote the best practice in terms of helping those with problem gambling.
Even if you feel like you don’t need any help, it doesn’t hurt to simply take a quick glance at their website and see what they are all about. This organization has helped so many problem gamblers that even the Canadian Government has invested resources towards advancing their programs and raising awareness.
The problem gambling programs include gambling prevention features that have been created to stop problem gambling from developing in the first place. Even though online casinos are not required to implement a single responsible gambling program, many gambling operators choose to do so directly on their gaming sites. These appear during players’ play sessions when certain criteria are met, i.e. after a certain amount of time, after a certain amount of money has been spent, etc.
Practical steps to help you stay in control
Of course, you don’t necessarily need to seek professional help if you suspect that you might have a problem. There are plenty of self-help tips that can help you play responsibly. All it takes is a bit of willpower.
Take breaks and set limits on your deposits
One of the best ways to keep your favourite pastime in check is to take breaks. Organize your schedule so that you only have a limited amount of time to play your games. A good strategy might be to gamble once or twice a week for one or two hours. Determine what works best for you and make sure you don’t neglect other needs (such as spending time with your family or exercising).
A great method to avoid exhausting all your funds is to set financial limits. Make sure you take a good long look at your bank account and determine how much you can afford to spend on real money games. Most players usually put CA$20 – CA$50 depending on their income.
If you are worried about overspending, many customers found that having a separate payment method for online casinos works wonders. So make an e-wallet (or crypto wallet) for online casinos and keep your bank account away from it all, if that works for you.
Never be afraid to ask for help
There is absolutely no shame in admitting that you have a gambling problem and that you need help. Fortunately, people are willing to help you out, more than you know it.
From free self-help checks to professional councils, there is no shortage of sites that can help you incorporate responsible play. The Responsible Gambling Council is a great place to start your journey toward recovery. Again, we’ve all been there, so there’s no shame in admitting that you have a problem.
Why The Casino Bros Promote Responsible Gambling Practices?
Casino Bros promote responsible gaming because your well-being is our main concern. Sure, your clicks matter to us and we do get paid when you select a gaming site via our links. However, gambling addiction comes with the territory and should be addressed accordingly.
We strongly believe gambling online to be a fun recreational and entertaining activity, which is what responsible gaming is all about. When we review online casinos we also have a score based on how many requirements a gambling operator meets. Fortunately, all our reviewed casinos have received the RG Check accreditation so we are proud that we only promote responsible gaming sites.
Online Casino Criteria That Receive a 5-Star Rating on Responsible Gambling
Receiving a clean 5-star rating requires meeting all of the following criteria:
- Self-assessment test. This is a multiple-choice questionnaire. It’s mandatory when players play money games. Such a series of questions serve to help players determine whether they have spent too much time or money playing casino games.
- Reality check reminders. These pop-up windows also appear during play sessions. They show how much time a player has spent playing and how much money they have already spent.
- Time-out period. A feature that locks the player out of their casino account and prevents them from accessing it. In most online casinos, this feature is off by default but players who suspect they might have a problem can activate it so they are sure to stop gambling for a pre-determined amount of time.
- Financial limits. It’s a simple tool that prevents players from depositing additional money after they reach a certain limit. This can also be adjusted or turned off completely at most casino accounts. We recommend you always have this feature turned on.
- Self-exclusion. Sometimes, ceasing to play completely is the way to go, which explains why self-exclusion programs exist. With this feature, you can personally lock yourself out of your casino account indefinitely. It’s similar to the time-out period but can only be activated by the player.
- Help and support. Live chat support, links to helpful problem gambling prevention sites, and any other form of help found on the gambling site itself is necessary. Many online casinos offer such services at the bottom of their homepage.
- Manual flushing. This feature lets players freeze their withdrawal amount without the ability to change their minds. Manual flushing is a great feature for players who like to cancel their withdrawals mid-way without regretting it.
What Is Bonus Abuse?
Playing responsibly can save you from going into debt but there are precautions we can take to prevent you from getting banned. Because online casinos have such extensive Terms and Conditions, many players don’t even realize that they are breaking rules during their own play sessions. This can lead to a notorious term in the industry – bonus abuse. To make sure that doesn’t happen to you, we’ve come up with some quick tips about how NOT TO abuse bonuses.
Practices That Are Considered Bonus Abuse
There are a couple of basic rules that all online casinos apply. If you’ve ever done any of the following, you were probably breaking one of the rules, but it’s a good chance you weren’t even aware of them.
Creating multiple accounts in an online casino
Almost all online casinos apply a strict one-account-per-household rule. In other words, these rules exist to prevent people from creating multiple accounts. Bonus abusers like to create multiple accounts so they can claim extra welcome bonuses and improve their chances of winning. It’s better to simply visit a different online gaming site and try your luck with a different welcome bonus.
Failing to meet the wagering requirements
Since every single bonus comes with its own wagering requirements, players have to rollover bonus money a certain amount of times before they can be withdrawn. That said, some online casinos will still allow you to withdraw funds before you meet the wagering requirements.
While this is illegal from the customer’s perspective, we believe this is something that online casinos should keep track of themselves. Also, don’t ask for refunds until you are sure that the wagering has been met.
Claiming the same casino bonuses multiple times
Most gambling sites (unless stated otherwise) won’t allow you to claim multiple bonuses, although many players often feel inclined to do so. So make sure, especially if you are playing at older online casinos, not to claim one-time bonuses more than once because the casinos can ban you.
Making large bets with bonus money
Another badly explained feature about deposit bonuses is the bet limitations on slot games. Even though the T&Cs state that bonuses have a maximum limit, some honest players will choose the maximum bet amount without even realizing they have broken the rules. This can lead to some unpleasant consequences, such as withholding withdrawals.
Trying to play ineligible games
Certain games are ineligible for meeting bonus wagering requirements. Unfortunately, some gambling sites fail to disclose this information clearly. Always check which casino games aren’t allowed for participating in bonuses and promotions. This can often lead to players winning funds only to realize that their accounts got banned.
Turn Problem Gambling Into Responsible Gambling
Always check if the gambling site you are playing at has responsible gaming features. If you feel like you might have a problem associated with gambling, please don’t be afraid to ask for help. And remember, keep an eye out for online casino reviews before diving in.