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Our Guide to Responsible Gaming

The primary purpose of gambling is entertainment. Players gambling in live and online casinos are primarily there to enjoy exciting games. However, the entertainment factor can quickly become overshadowed by gambling’s addictive nature. In those cases, players are strongly advised to seek help. Harmful behaviors significantly affect not only the lives of the players but also their families and friends. That is why playing responsibly is paramount. To protect yourself and those around you, stay safe and in control of your actions. If you encounter any difficulties, please refer to our responsible gaming guide.

In the following sections, you can find the most common symptoms of problem gambling, ways to solve them, and the best places to look for help if you notice you have a hard time leaving casinos online. Finally, if you still have questions about problem gambling, please check our answers to frequently asked questions at the bottom of the page.

Easy Tips on How to Gamble Responsibly

The highly appealing nature of casino gaming easily makes the line between enjoyment and harmful behavior blurred. Players frequent gambling sites to try out games and have a good time – but sometimes, having too much fun and getting carried away can lead to disastrous results. In other words, a seemingly harmless hobby can turn into an unhealthy habit. The worst thing about this is that players might not even notice the transformation before it’s too late. To prevent harm to yourself and your loved ones, you must always strive to stay in control of your actions.

The first step every gambler should take upon entering the gambling realm is to form a checklist of dos and don’ts. Setting boundaries will not limit your fun – but rather create a safe framework within which you can safely enjoy your casino hobby. Moreover, a lack of boundaries leaves you vulnerable to the alluring side of gambling. Live Casinos has gathered easy tips for staying safe and playing responsibly. They represent the core preventive measures you should take before stepping inside gambling venues.

  • Never consider gambling a way to make a profit. It is intended as a leisure activity only.
  • Never use funds you cannot afford to lose. Money intended for bills, rent, and any similar purpose should never be used at online casinos. Instead, gamble with funds you have set aside for entertainment.
  • Establish betting boundaries. Decide on a maximum deposit and wager amounts and never stray from the limits you’ve chosen.
  • Choose a time limit for gambling and follow it. Spending too much time playing casino games can potentially be harmful. Once you decide how much time you want to play per day/week/month, respect the limit as much as you can.
  • Avoid playing if you are feeling sad, anxious, angry, or irritated. Even the slightest changes in mood and feelings could lead you to impulsive and rash decisions.
  • Never drink while gambling. Alcohol has a negative impact on your focus, judgement, and reaction time. Moreover, it lowers your defenses, and you can quickly slip into impulsivity.
  • Never chase losses. Although most players are not immune to the gambler’s fallacy, it is important to stop when you encounter a losing streak. Betting more will not result in a big win but rather in a greater loss of funds. It’s better to stop gambling than continue losing money.
LiveCasinos
LiveCasinos

Set limits and stay in control of your gambling. Never bet more than you can afford to lose.

Common Warning Signs of Problem Gambling

Overcoming a gambling addiction is a long and arduous process, but it always starts with a simple step: establishing a problem. You cannot handle something if you are not aware it exists, right? Therefore, one of the main things you should do is try to detect the presence of potential addiction indicators. It is also the first step towards a healthier and more organized gambling hobby that you can safely enjoy. By keeping track of your thoughts, actions, and emotions when gambling’s involved, you apply preventive measures and maintain control over your actions. Hence, even if you feel like you are not at threat of gambling addiction, regularly checking for signs of gambling addiction or problem gambling is a healthy and important task. As you now understand the importance of recognizing the problem, it is time to learn what types of behavior to pay close attention to.

What is considered a gambling addiction?

A gambling addiction, or compulsive gambling, is an impulse-control disorder affecting casino gamblers. Gamblers suffering from gambling addiction cannot control their urges to wager money on gambling games. The impulse to bet money on games is often stronger than reason. No matter how well you can rationalize other situations and behaviors, you cannot stop yourself from wagering at casinos. We also have to note that problem gambling affects people from all walks of life, regardless of gender, profession, and age. It is also not tied to the type of game a problem gambler enjoys. Slots can be as equally addictive as blackjack, roulette, sports betting, and bingo. Furthermore, problem gambling can have a myriad of manifestations, ranging from mild to severe gambling addiction symptoms. However, regardless of the severity of the symptom, no sign of gambling addiction should be taken lightly.

Signs that you could be suffering from a gambling disorder:
  • Increasing the pace and intensity of gambling to recuperate previously lost funds on casino games
  • Borrowing money to use for gambling purposes
  • Stealing money to use for gambling purposes
  • Playing casino games to avoid feeling depressed, anxious, or in any kind of mental/emotional turmoil
  • Lying about the amount of money or time spent gambling
  • Spending more than you can afford and going into debt
  • Obsessing over casino games and constantly thinking about gambling, even when you are not playing
  • If you are feeling the need to gamble, rather than consider it merely a fun activity
  • Cancelling plans and avoiding obligations such as work and family duties to have more time for gambling
  • Not having enough willpower to stop anytime, and instead of leaving only when you’ve lost all funds you had when you entered the game

Self-Check Measures for Managing Time and Money Spent on Gaming

Although it may not seem so, there are many ways to solve a gambling problem. You can seek help from trained professionals, consult friends and family members, or even go into therapy. However, the most crucial part is to decide to help yourself. And the best way to do that is to impose a set of restrictions like the gambling limits displayed in the section below. We strongly advise our readers to use self-check measures when playing casino games online and live. Plus, proposed self-check measures are not used only as a tool for overcoming gambling addiction. Their greatest perk is the preventive ability, as they protect you from developing an addiction in the first place. Therefore, if you want to ensure you will not slip into hazardous behaviors and develop a severe habit, we urge you to take preventive actions.

Setting limits at online casinos

Setting limits at your chosen gambling places is crucial as it helps create a safe zone where you can truly enjoy your favourite games. If you have clear boundaries and respect them, you can relax and immerse yourself in the experience. On the other hand, you don’t have to worry about crossing boundaries and slipping into risky behavioral patterns. Limitations such as deposit, loss, bet, and time limits keep you safe. On the other hand, should you notice worrying signs of potential gambling addiction, self-assessment and ultimately self-exclusion are the first steps towards overcoming addiction.

Deposit Limits:

Select the maximum amount you can transfer your casino account to use for wagering. More and more casinos are offering help with setting deposit limits for their players as well.

Loss Limit:

Loss limit represents the maximum amount you can afford to lose within a game. Before you start playing, make sure to implement the limit to prevent losing money excessively.

Play Session Limit:

This limit refers to the amount of money and time you can play your casino games. You can restrict your sessions to minutes or hours, but please make sure to set a reasonable limit.

Wager Limit:

The wager limit restricts the wagering amount you are allowed to place as stakes within the game.

Time-Outs:

A gambling time-out refers to a temporary exclusion from casino games on the operator’s website. With a breather in place, you cannot access games in the lobby for at least 24 hours (or more).

Self-Assessment:

Self-assessment tools are assessment tests you can take online to check whether you have any mild or severe symptoms of gambling addiction.

Self-Exclusion:

Self-exclusion refers to the voluntary decision to take a longer break from gambling. The self-exclusion period can last from 24 hours (a brief pause) to indefinitely, often using a 6-month minimum limit. Self-exclusion services prevent you from accessing gambling websites and receiving promotional material or ads.

Each of these limits s designed to keep you in check and help you have a healthier and happier experience at the casino. Often, the boundaries are necessary as gambling is highly appealing and can quickly evolve into a dangerous addiction. However, you are not alone in this. Casinos must participate in programs promoting responsible gaming and offer safety measures and protocols for problem gamblers. You can always reach out to the casino management for help and counsel.

Help to overcome and identify a gambling problem

As we said, you are not alone in this. Compulsive gambling is a serious problem and should be adequately addressed. That means you should work on solving the problem by yourself, ask friends and family for support and assistance, and reach out to trained professionals. An unfortunate fact about gambling addiction (and any form of addiction in general) is that most players who suffer from it are unaware that they have a problem. Hence, by using self-assessment techniques, a gambler can come closer to the solution by first identifying the matter. An integral part is accepting the fact that you need help and seeking it from others. Friends and family are important as they provide much-needed support. You can also contact various organizations and services specializing in helping with gambling problems.

Gambling Therapy App

– Online service providing help with identifying and handling addiction to problem gamblers living in the UK

Help Guide

A nonprofit organization offering gambling addiction counsel to players worldwide, including the USA

Free and paid anti-gambling software and apps

Anti-gambling software can also be a valuable tool for gambling control. If you are not keen on using self-exclusion services, you may download anti-gambling software to restrict visits to online casino sites and similar websites offering betting games.

Anti-gambling software is downloadable content that you can install on your desktop, tablet, and mobile device. Aside from preventing you from visiting sites, it also blocks pop-up advertisements, promotional content, and any form of gambling-related marketing. Players can use both free and paid software for anti-gambling. An important factor while choosing the appropriate software or app is to check whether it is accepted in your country of residence.

Bet Blocker

Price: Free per month
Platforms: Windows and Desktop
Available Countries: Worldwide
Mobile: Android
Bet Blocker is a responsible gambling app launched in 2017 by the UK service ThePOGG.com. It is one of the best anti-gambling software on the internet right now. It is free, so users never have to pay a cent for using it. It offers self-exclusion as well as parental control options. Once set, the no-playtime restriction cannot be lifted until the period of exclusion expires.

Bet Filter

Price: $5.83/month (1-year license), $4.95/month (2-year license) per month
Platforms: Windows
Available Countries: Worldwide
Mobile: Android
Bet Filter blocks gambling sites and advertisements. It was developed thanks to Kindred Group, which sponsored the software launch as part of its responsible gaming campaign. Significant brands like EuroGrand, Svenska Spel, and GamCare are notable partners of Bet Filter. The only downside is the price – Bet Filter is a paid software app.

Freedom

Price: $2.42/month – $6.99/month per month
Platforms: Desktop and Windows
Available Countries: Worldwide and Europe
Mobile:
Freedom is a focus app which you can use for blocking gambling content. The creators of Freedom made it possible for the users to use the app for a variety of reasons. It is not a free app, though. There are several pricing plans, but the one that is affordable the most is the yearly plan costing $2.42/month. If you want to use it month by month, the price is $6.99. Two great benefits of Freedom software are a month-long free trial and data sync across all devices.

Gamban

Price: $3.49/month - $2.92/month (Annual Subscription) per month
Platforms: Windows and Desktop
Available Countries: Canada, Europe and Worldwide
Mobile: Android
Gamban is an app designed specifically to help players with compulsive gambling. The app employs virtually impenetrable software, which prohibits you from visiting sites and seeing ads. It offers a free trial version (lasting seven days), after which you have to pay to use it. However, the price is quite affordable. The pricing plan includes monthly and annual subscriptions.

GamBlock

Price: $17.79/month - $187.95/year per month
Platforms: Windows and Desktop
Available Countries: Worldwide
Mobile: Android
GamBlock is among the oldest anti-gambling services on the internet. It has been catering to players and helping them stay away from casino sites since 2000. The website provides precise payment info where you can choose a device you will be using GamBlock on, the number of devices, and the blocking period. Prices start from $17.79/month and can go up to $187.95/year.

Net Nanny

Price: $39.99 – $129.99 per month
Platforms: Windows and Desktop
Available Countries: Worldwide
Mobile: Android and Windows
Net Nanny is a parental control software enabling you to block unwanted websites like gambling sites. It is also often used for blocking social media. Although it is geared towards parental control services (YouTube and social media protection), it is quite handy for anti-gambling protection. The service uses AI to block internet content. There is no free trial, though.

Myths and Misconception About Gambling

Due to its unpredictable nature, gambling breeds mystery. Mystery frequently leads to theories and questions, which is how some of the wildest ideas and misconceptions entered the everyday life of gambling. In other words, because we cannot explain or control the outcomes in games of luck, it is easy to fall back on unfounded theories. Unfortunately, myths in other branches of entertainment serve only as fodder for further questioning, whereas gambling myths and misconceptions are potentially dangerous. Live Casinos listed the most common myths in gambling and debunked them with solid facts.

Common Gambling Myths Debunked

Myth

Gambling is a sure way to earn money.

Fact

Gambling is not a steady source of income and should never be thought of like this. It is a form of entertainment, not a way to gain profit.

Myth

Gambling is not addictive.

Fact

A growing base of studies and research has clearly shown that compulsory gambling is a severe form of addiction. Hence, gambling is addictive.

Myth

The longer you play, the more money you can win.

Fact

This is not untrue, but it is certainly not law. If you have been losing for several rounds, the best decision you could make is to stop playing. Staying in the game and betting more will lead to even more considerable losses. Don’t chase losses.

Myth

It is possible to predict whether a coin toss will end up being heads or tails.

Fact

Tossing a coin is a singular event with 50-50 chances of it being heads or tails. Predicting based on previous tosses is ineffective as previous outcomes have no impact on the current toss whatsoever.

Myth

Problem gamblers play every single day.

Fact

Gambling addiction can manifest as episodic or continuous. Some players with severe addiction symptoms might even take a break for several months before returning to the casinos. Although the frequency of visits is often taken as an indicator of compulsive gambling, it is not always manifested in the same way with everyone.

Myth

Gambling problems only affect players’ finances.

Fact

An addiction of any kind affects players mental and emotional stability, as well as other life aspects – such as work, school, and social relationships. It seriously affects family and friend relationships and leaves a profound impact on the psyche.

Myth

Feeling lucky means you will be victorious.

Fact

Having a feeling that tells you that you will win does not mean you will win. It does not work like that. This feeling inspires three common misconceptions – the hot hand fallacy, gambler’s fallacy, and the ‘I’m on a roll’ fallacy.

Myth

I don’t have a problem with gambling because I can afford it.

Fact

The financial aspect of such a problem is just a fragment. Emotional and mental instability, compulsive urges, and harmful behavior are signs of addiction, even if the player has enough money to cover his debts.

List of Problem Gambling Organizations in Different Countries

Gambling is an international phenomenon appealing to millions of punters worldwide. Hence, if many punters enjoy games online at the same time, they also suffer and are at risk simultaneously as well. Therefore, international companies and brands working in the industry have joined forces and created independent organizations and services tasked with assisting and protecting players from the harms of wagering. These are all websites and companies offering support for identifying, solving, and treating addiction problems. If you need any help, don’t hesitate to reach out to the organization that operates in your country of residence. Below is a complete list of all organizations actively working in all parts of the world.

Frequently Asked Questions

Self-exclusion is a voluntary decision to abstain from gambling online. To do so, you can choose anti-gambling software, gambling blockers, or simply ask the casino to restrict your account. The self-exclusion period can last from 24 hours to forever. When you sign up for self-exclusion, you pick the exclusion period. When the period ends, you can revisit the casinos, or you can continue not playing.
Responsible gaming is a necessary part of online gambling. It includes a set of guidelines and rules everyone involved in the industry should respect. The rules are set to protect all parties involved, especially players at high risk of developing an addiction.
The first thing you can do if you are worried that you might be spending too much money at the gambling site is to introduce limits. Deposit and betting limits are the first limits you should impose. All licensed gambling websites have to include this option, so you should not have a problem with introducing deposit/wager limits.
If you suspect a loved one could potentially have a problem with gambling addiction, you should seek help and advice from trained professionals right away. Check our list of problem gambling organizations and contact the ones working in your country.
If you want to keep track of your spending habits, you can both set up a wager/deposit limit and restrict the amount of money you use for gambling. For help with this matter, don’t hesitate to contact the casino management for limit setup help.
If you want to gamble responsibly, you should adopt healthy and responsible gaming habits. For instance, self-assess regularly, play only when you are happy and have the money you are ready to lose. Moreover, never think of it as a means to support yourself financially. If you encounter any issues or notice any sign of compulsive gambling, you should seek professional help.
Problem gambling is a serious issue affecting millions of players worldwide. In the USA, the latest reports suggest that over 20 million players suffer from addiction to gaming (symptoms range from mild to severe). On the other hand, studies in the UK show that the largest percentage of problem gamblers are aged 25 to 34, while those aged 16 to 24 are close behind.
Yes, you can restrict yourself by using anti-gambling software which blocks all gambling-related content from your computer and mobile device. Until the restrictive period passes, you cannot visit any similar website or lift the ban.
If a person in your vicinity displays any of the warning signs of gambling addiction, the chances of having a gambling problem are high. To make sure, you can check or talk with the person to see how the person feels about this. If not, you can also contact a professional organization or service concerned with helping vulnerable players.
Arguably the best way is to use anti-gambling software, which includes parental control options. Our best recommendations are Bet Blocker and Net Nanny. For more info, check our paid and free anti-gambling software section above.