For most people, gambling online is what it should be – a fun way to spend their leisure time. However, for a small minority, gambling online can be a problem.

The vast majority of our online customers will never experience a problem. However, playing responsibly is not confined to those who either have a gambling problem or are the most at risk of developing one. It is the best approach for everyone.

The licensed websites that we recommend help by providing the functionality to:

How will I know if I have a problem?

A good way to gauge whether your gambling is no longer fun, and may be getting out of control, is to ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Do you gamble alone on your computer for long periods, perhaps staying away from work or other activities to do so?
  2. Have you needed to increase your gambling stake more and more to get the excitement you are looking for?
  3. Do you suffer mood swings, irritability and agitation when you are not gambling?
  4. Do you think that you gamble to escape other issues or problems in your life?
  5. Have you ever claimed to be winning from gambling when, in fact, you are losing?
  6. Have you tried, in the past, to reduce either the time or money that you spend gambling and been unsuccessful?
  7. Have you ever been tempted to commit an act of dishonesty to finance your gambling?
  8. Have you ever gone back online to gamble, on another day, to win back your losses?
  9. Have you ever hidden your gambling from people who are important to you in your life?
  10. Have you borrowed money, from any source, that you have been unable to pay back because of your gambling or are you otherwise in debt as a result of gambling?
  11. Have you ever sold any possessions to obtain money to gamble or pay gambling debts?
  12. Do you find yourself breaking promises, to family and friends, so that you can gamble instead?

If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, then you may need to take control of your gambling, using the information below.

You can also take the confidential ‘Worried about your gambling’ quiz on the BeGambleaware website and try out their Gambling Calculator to give you an indication whether your gambling is becoming a problem.

What should I do if I think I have a problem?

The first step in taking back control is to be completely honest with yourself and accept that there is a problem, but that you have the will to confront it. Having done so, you have taken the biggest step to address the issue.

It may be that simply standing back and realising that you have been displaying some of the above behaviours is enough to make you adjust your approach and allow you to resume control. Alternatively, you may feel you need help, advice and support.

Never be afraid or embarrassed to ask for help

Practical steps to help you stay in control:

  1. Ask someone you trust to handle your money for an agreed amount of time (for example, three months) or otherwise seek their assistance in setting a budget plan.
  2. Limit the level of your deposits or expenditure or the time you spend online. Our recommended gaming web sites provide tools to allow you to impose your own limits on expenditure.
  3. Reward yourself for “gambling free” periods by spending the money you saved on something for yourself or your family.
  4. If all else fails – stop gambling. Self-exclude yourself from all the websites on which you normally bet or play. If you believe exclusion is the best option for you, it is advisable to take an appropriate break from ALL forms of gambling.
  5. If you want to prevent access to other gaming, wagering or gambling facilities on the internet, visit gamblock.com, which will help you do so.
  6. Use a calendar to mark each day that you don’t gamble, so that you can see the progress you are making.

Independent help services

If you need further detailed advice, or more specific help and counselling, please contact one of the following independent help services.

The National Council on Problem Gambling operates the National Problem Gambling Helpline Network (1-800-522-4700). The network is a single national access point to local resources for those seeking help for a gambling problem. The network consists of 28 call centers which provide resources and referrals for all 50 states, Canada and the US Virgin Islands. Help is available 24/7 and is 100% confidential.