- Written by Kamen Valev
What does a gambling addiction mean, and ways to treat it?
In this article, we will talk about very important topics such as gambling addictions and the psychology of gambling. By the end of this article, you should know if you are addicted to gambling and how to get rid of it.
We will try to understand the psychology of gamblers in total. If you are new to the casino industry this article will be very beneficial for you. By the end of the article, you will know if you have a gambling addiction. We will also give you examples of gambling addictions and ways to control them.
Reasons for gambling addictions
You need to know that many eras, generations and governments have changed but gambling will never change. Why are people so addicted when we know that the casino always wins in the end?
Gambling is an addiction that anyone could have. It's similar to drug addiction, if you begin you slowly get addicted. This habit might be easier to treat depending on the player’s psychology. There are times where the gambling addiction is so big that it stays forever.
Are new players lucky or is the first "dose" free?
At the start, inexperienced players are most likely to get a good amount of money. This makes them more and more interested in gambling. I can get a good profit and have fun, it's a great way to double your money and you can often win a bigger amount than in a regular operation! Thinking in this way, players start playing more and more and end up getting addicted.
Anyhow, the casino has one rule - to get a mathematical advantage so that the casino always wins. The aim of the casino is to attract more players because more of them = a bigger chance for the casino to win. And to add on, the player's psychology is also a discussion.
People say they won't get addicted by playing once, but our minds select memories that we want to remember or not, for instance, you could have lost a small amount of money 100 times, but when you win a big amount 1 you will remember it for a long period of time. You will keep playing hoping that you might hit something big again forgetting about all of the small losses. Any experienced player can tell you that they have lost a humongous amount of money doing the same things, but he is addicted and has no other choice, so he keeps playing repeating everything over and over again.
Winning isn't as important as the actual game
After a few games, you will realize that triumph is not as important as the game. On a daily basis, you wouldn't experience such adrenalin while playing gives you that feeling. Some people say that this type of emotion is similar to" driving range": this happens when a person gets bad-tempered (while driving) and doesn't pay attention to the car. If you play at slots, you should remember how you felt in the following situations:
- When you hit a win at high stakes
- When a symbol that was missing falls on high stakes
- When the 3rd Scatter and the free spins with a multiplier get triggered at a high bet
After all, we all need these feelings and emotions. Gaming will become more important than victory and the addiction will start getting worse. You may want to read the following article about the effect of endorphins and how do gambling addictions form.
The phases of gambling addictions
Another name for gambling addiction is psychological gaming. This is a disease, along with alcoholism, drug and sex addiction. These kinds of people may join the groups for treatment. They will have individual training along with group training too. These people need help and cannot do this by themselves.
- At the start, a gambler should be capable to figure out the sum that they can afford to lose, so they will probably be on a budget.
- As time passes, and the gambling addiction starts getting worse, the gambler will always have an excuse for gambling and he /she will now lose control and might start asking friends for money, at this point, they really have to start to think about their actions and stop before it gets extremely bad.
- If the addiction isn’t stopped by this point, the addiction is so bad, that the player owes a lot of people money, he cannot borrow any more money as no one trusts him, so, the only way to return the money he owes is by hitting a big win. To hit a big win you need to play at high stakes, now all that matters is money, the gambler needs them to return everything and there is no way out. Onward, nothing else matters, he doesn’t care where the money came from as long as he/she has them. It doesn't matter if they were saved or stolen, if they were borrowed or lent, all he cares about now is winning. There is no yesterday or tomorrow. If he miraculously wins (even though the chances are extremely low) he won’t stop gambling in the hope to win again and gain a lot of money. In the end, nothing happens, he is extremely addicted, and there is no outcome except that he lost a humongous amount of money and ended up at the bottom of the social tower.
Who are the addicted gamblers?
Gamblers that have an addiction are likely to be set side by side with people with drug addiction. I’m not going to lie, I agree with this comparison. Even though players don't take a substance, he gets a lot of emotions, adrenaline and endorphins, these things enter the blood at a big win or bonus rounds. The bad thing is that the addiction gets worse as the excitement is still there.
You may have heard the expression” there is only one passion”.Well we all know what the gambler’s passion is the game, this comes along with other things. The punter’s family, hobbies, his job or anything that a non-addicted person would do isn’t important anymore. Losing isn’t crucial anymore either. The player spends it so quickly, that he will forget it in days maybe even hours.
The value of money
For addicted gamblers, nothing except gambling matters. You might or might not believe this, but a player knows at the utmost level, that he won’t win. His thoughts may be: should I leave a big tip at the restaurant? There isn’t a reason not to. I will either win or lose a lot today.1000 CAD won’t make a difference. Some players get so addicted that they end up dreaming about games, pokies, big wins and things related to gambling in general. Gambling is now a thing that the punter cannot live without. At this stage, the gambling addiction is extremely bad and it is not under control, you need help before it gets any worse (read below)
Symptoms of a gambling addiction
One of the reasons for people relating to drug and gambling addictions is that you need an increase in the dose, this is about emotions. To feel adrenaline he needs to raise the stakes. If not, the player starts losing interest and stops playing. Even if he does raise the stakes, the player won’t feel strong emotions for long, he will need to continue raising the stakes to feel the adrenaline and keep having fun.
You can bet up to 1000CAD for each spin. The punter will obviously get a bit of fun and adrenaline, but this will all stop when the gambled sum becomes significant.
The amount that the gambler had before he got addicted does not matter. A millionaire, for instance, would get sick of betting 100CAD, he will then probably raise the stakes up to 1000CAD, then he will keep adding money to the bets making them higher. So, if the punter wants to win millions, the only way to do so would be to start by betting tens of millions and then add money to the stakes. Your casino along with any other, can change the highest bet on any level.
A game session of a standard addicted gambler
Punters that have an addiction at a secondary level usually have a game session like this:
- A player can always finish the gambling session when he/she hits a win. Sadly, this rarely happens due to the fact that after the withdrawal request the gambler starts thinking that he could double the money or at least win more. The consequences of this procedure are either a cancellation of withdrawing or a repeated deposit for a further game. So instead of withdrawing and actually winning something he loses it all in the next session
- In the other case, if the gambler doesn’t win, he won’t stop, he’ll keep playing because he wants and needs the money he just gambled. This emotion is called” the feeling of revenge”. When the player loses all of the money he is even more determined to win the lost money. This makes him bet higher and make decisions thoughtlessly.
- If the sum in the player’s account is a “good amount” he will start betting higher, but, on the other hand, if the amount is minor, he will search for ways to deposit or he might just imagine that he is playing on high stakes.
- The metamorphoses from the human mind have no bounds at all.
Check if you have a gambling addiction
By answering the following questions you will know if you have a gambling addiction or not, you do not need to answer them with a full sentence, yes or no is enough.
- Are you playing more than an hour per day?
- Are you likely to go over your budget for the day?
- Do you or have you ever borrowed money for a game?
- Is gambling a priority, let's say for example cancelling plans or choosing to gamble instead of having friends come over for dinner?
- Have you ever had a dream/dreams about a pokie or a big win?
- Have you ever spend all night playing or have you ever woken up at night just so you could play?
- Did you ever win something and then cancel the withdrawal request to keep playing hoping that you will win, but you end up losing everything?
- Are you in a rush to play? For example when driving a car.
So, what are your results, if you relate to at least 2 of the answers, then the addiction is slowly forming. If you have 2 or more affirmative answers then you definitely have to start changing the way you think and act, you should also see a specialist, he/she will definitely help you stop the addiction before it gets any worse.
How to stop gambling addiction?
- Drug and alcohol addictions have a very similar treatment method. Every addicted gambler should always remember that there will always be better things in life that he/she will enjoy. The whole idea of this is for the gambler to actually understand how amazing it is to not owe people money, he will then realize that he is doing the wrong thing and he will then stop.
- You are probably aware that gambling addiction isn’t something that you can get rid of for a day, you need time, the player starts getting impatient and wants to play more and more. The player must slowly start betting less, when you start lowering the amount you must plan the prizes. After the amount gets low you will start playing for entertainment and won't be betting more than the amount you plan to.
- There are a few ways to stop the gambling addictions, some may help you lower the amount that you bet while others may help you stop playing fully. Several of them may require time to apply all of the limits.
One of the most used methods is to set a limit to your bank card. You can choose whether you want daily limits, weekly limits or monthly limits, this way, at some point, when you go over the amount of money that you put in, the micro-stakes show up and you can’t bet more than the daily/weekly/monthly limit. Now you won’t have any problems with losing too much money
The limits for a game
A lot of big and popular casinos start getting concerned about players with a gambling addiction. All players in specific casinos get a chance to set daily, monthly or weekly limits. The way this works is that once you reach your limit the casino doesn't let you deposit or continue a game. But I can always go back and set a new limit, then I can just play again? The casinos have thought about that too, if you want to set a new limit, you will have to wait one whole week to play and deposit again.
This method is definitely different from the one above because it’s cautiously lowered limits. Getting rid of the addiction would be much more convenient. In this method, you have n option to have “special days “where you can increase your limits. You have two options for this method, these are to register in a few casinos and ask them to block your account or you could ask the bank to take the transactions from a specific operator. then you can b able to play at one selected casino where you are the one in charge of the cost.
You should see a specialist
If you have a more severe addiction, you should definitely contact a specialist. There are particular groups where gamblers practise the therapy together, but unfortunately, these types of groups may only be found in large cities. The fee for this facility is available at many different prices. You could find a therapy site online, but this isn’t highly recommended as the two methods above help a lot more.
Using a few methods(complex approach)
- I personally think that using more than one method may help a lot more, let’s say for instance, that your budget is 500CAD for one month, you could set a limit of 170CAD for one week at a bank-level? You should never forget to ask the operative to set a limit that cannot change for 30 business days.
- After this is done, you have to block the casinos that do not have stake limits, you can also ask the worker to set an exception to one of the casinos.
- I know for sure that once you play like this for a few weeks or months you will realize that you experience the same strong feeling while playing at micro-stakes but you don’t go over your budget. This method should definitely stop the gambling addiction while you control the cost of everything, this helps you even more because it motivates you to keep doing what you are right now.
As you start controlling yourself, you will find out that life is much better without gambling, in conclusion, you will stop gambling and you will not go back to gamble at any costs!
Where to play?
- We highly recommend you play in demo mode or real money at Fastpay Casino. They will send the money super-fast and will provide one of the best customer care in the gambling industry.