How Not to Get Out of Hand in Online Casinos
Since the advent of the web, online gambling has ballooned into one of the most sought-after leisure activities. There are now countless casinos summonable with a few clicks that offer a vast range of games in the thousands, ensuring something for everyone. While such easy accessibility is a significant step forward for humanity, it has also come with the downside of rising gambling addiction cases. Playing casino games is proven to trigger dopamine releases, and gamblers can easily become dependent on the habit, just like junkies are with drugs. Here are practical measures you can apply to ensure the practice does not get out of hand.
For some people, the best way to prevent online gambling addiction is by avoiding the activity altogether. There are countless other leisure activities available online that do not pose the same risks that casinos do. Avoid this pastime, especially if you are exposed to risk factors like:
- Genetics and family history – it is possible to be genetically more predisposed to compulsive gambling than the average human. Some people are born with a constant thirst for thrills that lead to chasing it voluntarily and permanently. In most cases, such individuals have relatives with addiction issues, even if they are not gambling.
- Mental disabilities – mental conditions like depression, anxiety, Parkinson’s, OCD, and bipolar disorder can magnify gambling focus, making it easier to get addicted.
- Environment – it is easy to adopt the habits in your surroundings. Therefore, if you are surrounded by friends, family, or a community struggling with gambling addiction, the practice can quickly get out of hand once you have a taste of it.
- Personality traits – if you are a person that gets easily bored, restless, impulsive, or are a workaholic, online casinos are the last place you should choose for entertainment. Such traits can create an obsession with beating the house despite odds being usually stacked against players.
Come to Terms with the Risks
While casino games come with the promise of massive potential payouts, they are usually in the house’s favor. Therefore, the chances of losing are always higher than those of winning. While payouts can be triggered occasionally, the gambling club is always the ultimate winner in the long run. Ensure you study game odds before you indulge in gameplay and come to terms with the fact that even sets with the best winning chances cannot assure beating the house. Knowing that there is a significant chance of losing also helps you avoid deceiving tactics sold by individuals looking to dupe unsuspecting players. The house edge usually varies from one title to another, and here are the ranges found in popular categories:
|Game Category||House Edge Range|
|Blackjack||0.0% – 2.0%|
|Video Poker||0.5% – 3%|
|Craps||0.6% – 1.4%|
|Slots||1% – 10%|
|Roulette||1.35% – 5.36%|
|Poker||2.5% – 5.0%|
Treat It Like Entertainment
With the odds stacked in the gambling house’s favor and against players, gambling should always be treated as a source of entertainment. Since there is no assurance that even the best games can land winnings consistently, casinos cannot be treated as a viable income source. While games like blackjack and poker allow players to go pro, colossal risk and monetary investment are necessary to succeed in the field. As an average gambler, treat gambling like watching a movie at the theatre or enjoying a fun day at the fair. You pay for the experience offered by such activities rather than any monetary gains you can get out of them. If you happen to stumble across rewards along the way, that’s great but not imperative.
Manage Your Money
Money management can make or break your experience in almost everything, from grocery shopping to gambling. Before kicking off your online casino adventure, determine a spending limit that is well within your disposable income. Also, decide the caps of what you are willing to stake per round. The minimum and maximum stake caps can be changed depending on the game and how well your bankroll is doing.
Most casino games are fast-paced, and each round can last little as two seconds. Therefore, your bankroll will deplete if there is no prior planning. If you’re working with a big budget, place high stakes to exploit the highest symbol or bonus wins that come by. If your bankroll is limited, play low bets to increase the number of rounds played, increasing the chances of winning. Once your gambling amount depletes, log off the casino and come back another time.
Suppose you get lucky and end up with a higher amount than you started gambling with, save the extra funds. If you started playing with $500 and your balance accumulates to $1,500, put the additional $1,000 aside and continue playing with your original amount. Even if you end losing everything this time around, you still walk away with a $500 profit.
Play Free Games
If managing your gambling finances is too tricky, play demo games instead. These sets usually have credits built into them that act as stakes and winnings. They offer the same experience as real money versions, from the visuals to the awarded payouts. The only difference is that no cash wagers are required, and the collected winnings cannot be withdrawn. Nearly all casino games have accompanying demo variations, and in most gambling dens, they are launchable without registration requirements.
Manage Your Time
Time management is just as vital as money management when it comes to gambling. It is easy to stay glued to your phones or PCs for hours if you do not have a schedule. Online casinos are often designed with striking images and animations to keep players excited and discourage logging off their sites or apps. Set a reasonable period you can spend daily or weekly indulging in your favorite games. Once the designated time elapses, log off and carry on with other things. Modern smartphones make this easy by including digital wellbeing settings that lock you out of the app once your time is used up.
Play In Safe Casinos
The casino in which you choose to play influences how well your gambling experience turns out. While almost all gambling clubs promise to be the perfect destination, many of them do not live up to ideal fairness and safety standards. The features you can use to sift out the best options include:
Licenses from revered bodies like the UK Gambling Commission, HM Government of Gibraltar, Alderney Gaming Control Commission, Malta Gaming Authority, and Curacao eGaming;
Approval seals from RNG testing firms like eCOGRA, BMM Test Labs, GLI, and iTech Labs;
The best casino reviews from real players and professional websites;
A wide variety of games sourced from reputable online gaming software developers like NetEnt, Play’n Go, Red Tiger, Push Gaming, and Microgaming;
Security measures like SSL and TCL encryption for restriction of unauthorized access.
Only Claim Suitable Bonuses
Bonus promotions feature in nearly all online casinos to attract players into considering one site over the next one. Like gambling dens, only a few incentives are worth claiming out of the thousands available. The packages often look enticing off face value with large amounts packed into them. However, it is the attached terms and conditions that you should pay attention to. Some bonuses have terms so steep that they end up causing losses instead of generating profit in the long run. The best bonuses usually have:
- A low playthrough term that demands a small amount to clear the incentives and its winnings for withdrawal;
- Open to use in any of the casino games, and they carry fair contribution rates towards clearing the wagering requirements;
- A reasonable shelf life that leaves enough time to claim and use the offer before becoming nullified;
- No maximum withdrawal limits;
- Fair betting limits that are not too big or too small.
Always Gamble Sober
Gambling online can inspire a fun atmosphere, especially when conducted in the company of others doing the same. When engaging in the activity, indulging in alcohol and drugs will impair judgment, leading to bad decisions like spending over your limit. Sobriety is crucial to making informed decisions that consider long-term impacts.
Gamble During Good Times
Gambling can easily get out of hand when used as a crutch for low moments like anger, depression, addiction to other substances, anxiety, and compulsive behaviors. Only conduct the activity as a highlight for happy and fun moments to avoid developing an addiction.
The Bottom Line
Stay vigilant to notice when gambling turns from a leisure activity into destructive behavior. Signs characterized with problem gambling include overspending, difficulty logging off casinos even when quitting is intentional, and sinking into financial distress from borrowing or stealing. If this happens, take the necessary measures to overcome the addiction, even seeking professional help.