Recent data shows that only about 1% of the US adult population has a severe problem with gambling.
The Arizona Department of Gaming (ADG) refined its policies when online sportsbooks went live in September 2021, knowing they needed to address responsible gambling.
The ADG established some responsible gambling guidelines for gamblers to help them recognize when their behavior has become problematic.
Set money limits
Gambling and vacations are both fun, but you only go on vacation when you can afford it.
Think of gambling the same way. The ADG suggests deciding ahead of time what your money limit will be and sticking to it, no matter what.
If you find yourself going through money too quickly, or spending more than you originally intended, step away and give yourself a cooling-off period before continuing.
Set time limits
Another strategy to keep your habit in check is to set a time limit for researching and placing bets.
How much time can you realistically afford to spend without it impacting the rest of your life? This includes the time you spend checking results. If gambling begins to affect your personal or professional life, you could have a problem.
Don’t gamble with credit
Just like establishing a limit to how much you spend gambling, you shouldn’t use credit cards to place bets. It’s too easy to quickly run up a balance on a credit card that you can’t afford.
If you use cash advances on your credit card to place a bet, you could lose money even if you win because of interest rates. You also run the risk of missing payments if you get in over your head, which will impact your credit score.
Losses are part of the game
Yes, winning a bet is fantastic, but it’s not guaranteed. Most people will lose more often than they win. Never spend money on gambling that you aren’t comfortable losing.
Never gamble when you have to win. If you find yourself betting because you have to pay bills or make up for a previous day’s losses, you might be inclined to place high-risk bets or bet based on need instead of value.
Don’t place bets with your ego, either. Winning or losing bets doesn’t define you. Always try to minimize the emotional lows and maximize the highs. If you find that you’re attaching your self-worth to betting, it’s time to talk to someone.
Responsible gambling keeps gambling a hobby
Gambling is a hobby that should be pleasurable and fun. Don’t use it to escape turmoil or unhappiness in your life.
If gambling is no longer fun, ask yourself why you are still participating. If you find that visiting one of Arizona’s casinos is more of a habit than a fun hobby, you should take a break.
Don’t chase bets to win your money back
Many gamblers get into real trouble when they keep gambling to win back what they have already lost. Chasing lost money goes against many of the strategies already suggested here.
If you’ve lost money, it should be money you could afford to lose.
Remember, losing happens more than winning. For those gamblers who keep playing hoping to win, the reality is that they usually end up with even more losses. If you have to “break even” to pay off debts, it’s time to seek help.
Gambling can be fun and exciting if you approach it using intelligent parameters. The Arizona Department of Gaming doesn’t want you to find yourself so wrapped up in gambling that you end up with a severe problem.