Responsible gambling is an important topic. Nobody likes to lose money in a casino. However, some people cannot stop after they start until their money is all gone. Playing slots, video poker, table games, poker or anything else where money is involved with an element of chance can become addicting to some players.
If you have a gambling problem, you are not alone. About one percent of the US population does. This number is about six percent in Nevada where nearly any developed area has a gambling establishment on every corner. There are many resources for those that are looking for help in Nevada and throughout the world.
How to control your gambling
The best way to keep your gambling as a form of entertainment and not a problem is to set a budget. Make sure the amount of money that you are putting at risk is not needed to pay bills. Leave the ATM card at home. If you must carry a credit or debit card with you to a casino, try to make it one that does not have an ATM PIN. That way there is no temptation to withdraw more than your budgeted amount if you go bust at the casino. To avoid fees, always take money out of an ATM before arriving at a casino.
Set an amount of time that you would like to play and stick with it. Make sure that other people in your party know your limit before you leave for the casino. That way there is no issue when it is time to head home.
It is tempting to take advantage of the free alcohol Las Vegas casinos serve. It is important to know your limit there. Intoxication can lead players to make careless bets at tables or on slot machines.
Play games within your bankroll. If the table game minimum bet is too high, try something else. Buying into a table game with less than is needed to withstand the variance can end quickly, ruining your casino trip. Try to schedule casino trips during slower times when minimum bets are lower.
Play slot and video poker machine denominations that are compatible with the amount of cash in your pocket. If you lose big early, drop down in limits. Do not bet bigger trying to win it all back in one spin.
It may be tempting to bet more when on a hot streak. However, variance will eventually catch up with you. It is better to think of life as one long casino session. The results of an individual trip to the casino should not be considered when determining how much to bet on a game.
Seeing that $10 million progressive slot jackpot is tempting. However, not only do these machines have a lower return than most other slot machines, the variance is also much higher as part of the bet seeds that massive progressive meter that only hits a few times every year in all of Las Vegas. Stick to games that will keep your bankroll alive longer. This will help prevent tilt that can devastate the finances.
National Council on Problem Gambling
The National Council on Problem Gambling is a nonprofit group that advocates for responsible gaming services from government bodies during regulation meetings and when gaming legislation is pending in a state. The group is neutral towards legalized gambling. It does not lobby for or against it. Its goal is ensuring there is proper funding for programs that aim to help those that develop gambling addiction.
Gamblers Anonymous was founded in 1957. The first meeting was held in Los Angeles. The group came up with the famous 20 questions that help gamblers determine if they may have a problem. The form asks whether a player often gambles to their last dollar or borrows money to finance casino trips, among other questions.
There are Gamblers Anonymous meetings across the country. The state does not need to have legalized gambling for the group to be involved in the community. The expansion of online gambling has given access to it in homes throughout the country so it is needed nearly everywhere.