According to government statistics, around 3% of the population can be categorised as either problem or pathological gamblers in any given year, we are unsure how much of this is specific to slots. Gambling is often painted alongside alcohol and substance abuse as one of the many vices that have plagued our species for centuries.
Addiction is often a side-effect or symptom of other human issues and should be treated with great care. There are certain things that society tells us it’s okay to be addicted to, like television or exercise.
Societal norms and media hype often create the stigma that surrounds our very human addictions and it’s often the more harmful convictions that gain prominence. The maligned forbidden fruits for humanity.
The Gambling Act of 2005 created a natural entry point for the UK Gambling Commission to set out a new set of guidelines surrounding the safety in gambling, tackling addiction, and illegality in the industry. The rise of online gambling in recent years has only widened the accessibility of problem gamblers. Where in previous years you could be banned from the bookmakers, it’s a lot more difficult to police your gambling while in your own home.
The well-being and safety is paramount to the ethos of Wizard Slots and we strive to offer informed support to our community when it comes to responsible gaming. See below a number of tips to help you stay on the right side of gambling:
Think of gambling as a form of entertainment rather than a way to make money
People gamble for many reasons but for the most part it’s the desire to make money that draws people in. Gambling creates an opportunity to make money at a speed and manner that is unavailable in other areas of legal life. The thrill of winning feels too good to be true and the feeling you have beat the odds delivers adrenaline.
Think of gambling as entertainment in the same way you’d go to the cinema or any other leisure activity. You enjoy going to the cinema but you wouldn’t go every night.
Set a Spending Limit
Everything is good in small doses, gambling is no different. All online casinos platforms will often encourage you to set deposit limits upon sign up with many occasionally giving reality check notifications if you seem to be gambling too much. If betting from a land based casino or book makers don’t your credit or debit card with you.
Only gamble what you can afford. Making the most of your depositing limits creates discipline while also offering a structured and controlled gambling experience.
Set a time limit
For the most part our lives are led by structure and routine. We wake up and have breakfast, go to work, enjoy some form of leisure activity, go to sleep, repeat. Again, it’s all about creating structure and healthy habits around your gaming. Set a time limit on how long you’d like to gamble for.
Avoid harmful substances while gambling
Alcohol and drugs can often blur our perceptions of reality and this can be a dangerous combination while gambling. Alcohol can lead you to make financial decisions while gambling that you wouldn’t necessarily make while sober and give you delusions about your chance of winning.
Don’t gamble while you’re upset or depressed
For many gambling is a form of escapism, a chance to gain some much needed relief from the challenges of everyday life. Gambling while upset or depressed can often lead you to make decisions that you wouldn’t normally make while in a positive frame of mind. It can create a ‘nothing to lose’ mentality that often manifests itself in garish stakes and chasing your losses.
When gambling you should be prepared for both sides of the coin, win or lose. The losses that can incur can often create disappointment in a player that will only be emphasised and worsened by the fact you are upset or depressed.
Don’t Chase your losses
Now that you’ve set your deposit limits you can be sure that no matter what, if you lose it’s only going to be an amount that you can afford. Chasing losses is an extremely dangerous part of gambling, thoughts of ‘I have to win sometime’ or ‘If I place this high stake, it will recover all my losses and I’ll break even’ often arise through delusion.
Learn when to walk away
Many of these points seem like obvious ways to enjoy your gambling experiences and maintain control, but adhering to these points are often the most difficult parts of addiction. Try and adopt the points that are built in technicality rather than emotion. Set the deposit and time limits, avoid alcohol and substances and learn when to walk away.
Build positive habits and structure around your gambling experience. Set your limits and learn when to walk away. If you’ve used up your deposit limit of £20 and your £100 up, take a step back. While playing it’s very easy to gain a blinkered view of the game and chase the money. Take a step back and clear your head, gain perspective.
Learn to build up your own set of personal rules that work for you. If you’re up a £100 why not withdraw £80 of it and play with the rest. If you can learn to quit while you’re ahead then you can do anything.
Gambling can affect all people around the world and we must work together to reduce the stigma surrounding the industry. Addiction is a human side-effect that you shouldn’t be ashamed of. There are many organisations who are well-equip to help you with your problems and place you onto a healthy path.
Addiction is often something that’s always been inside of us, rather than ignoring it completely it’s healthy to stare it in the face and work alongside it in a way that works for you. For any further information surround Wizard Slot's policy regarding responsible gaming please read our guidelines or visit www.gamcare.org.uk.