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Knowing where the fun ends and trouble begins is sometimes difficult to determine. It varies with each person, and isn’t just about money spent gambling (because everyone has a different amount of disposable income).
Gambling problems are likely to develop when a person:
Problem gambling refers to all gambling behaviour that:
Knowing if you or someone you care about has a gambling problem is sometimes hard to determine. The line from recreational gambling to problem gambling is different for everyone. Here are some signs gambling may be a problem:
A significant number of people with problem gambling behaviours also have problems with substance abuse. Losses from gambling may lead to substance abuse as a coping strategy. Loss of inhibition through alcohol or drug use may also reduce self-control while gambling.
Problems with gambling follow a continuum, ranging from no gambling-related problems, to those who are experiencing some problems, to those experiencing the most severe problems.
Moderate risk gambling refers to a level of gambling involvement that is starting to have a negative impact on the gambler and/or their family. At this point the gambler or family may have some thoughts or feelings that begin to question the level of gambling involvement. The answer may not be obvious, as the consequences are not as dire as what is typically portrayed: loss of a home, job or family breakdown.
In Reality: Pay out symbols appearing just above or below a pay line only means one thing - you lost. All those "near wins" give players the feeling of getting close to the jackpot. Don't be fooled. You're no closer.
In Reality: The truth is - there is nothing a player can do that will influence the outcome. The results on VLTs and slots are determined by a computer chip called a Random Number Generator (RNG). The RNG ensures that results are random and impossible to predict. The next spin has absolutely nothing to do with the previous spin. Every spin gives a player the exact same chance of winning or more often losing.
In Reality: No machine is ever hot or due to win. To ensure that no player has an advantage, all machines are programmed to be random with winning results impossible to predict. Machines that have not paid out are no more likely to pay out than a machine that has just had a winning spin. Every spin gives you the exact same chance of winning, or more often losing.
In Reality: Trying to win back money you've lost is a sign of a problem. Set limits on how much you want to spend. Consider your losses as the cost of a night out. Remember, the more you spend, the more you'll lose.
In Reality: Oh sure, there are some elements of skill, but don't be fooled into thinking your skill can outweigh chance. With millions of possible hands, the luck of the draw is most often the deciding factor.
In Reality: In Saskatchewan there is no truth that gaming operators regularly change payouts or that they determine when a jackpot will be won. Winning and losing results are random – 100 per cent of the time. All machines make money over time, some more than others. The difference in how much a machine earns depends mostly on the type of game and how popular it is and not on the payout percentage.
In Reality: There are problem gambling counsellors in every health region - free of charge.
Call to connect to someone who can help. 1-800-306-6789
Unfortunately, there are no guarantees in life. Anyone who gambles can develop gambling-related problems.
There are many factors that affect an individual’s risk of developing a gambling problem. The risk varies from one person to the next. You can reduce your risk if you:
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