When enjoyment becomes a compulsion
We’ll come out and say it. Online gambling is fun. You could be an avid poker player or a weekend lazy roller. A regular online casino visitor or a bonus hunter. It doesn’t make a difference. We all enjoy gambling.
The thrill of that unlikely win. The camaraderie of fellow gamblers from all over the world, sharing and competing together in a scenario otherwise impossible in a land-based casino. Some people even enjoy watching and hearing about the crazy luck of that Jackpot winner or random giveaway so familiar to online casinos.
However, let there be no illusions. As fun as gambling is, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. If left unchecked, the urge to gamble on, chasing losses or reaching targets, can lead to undesirable consequences, both financially and personally.
Can Bitcoin gambling be addictive like the “real thing”?
Absolutely. In fact, the very nature of Bitcoin’s technological advantages over other forms of digital or electronic payments can unfortunately make the Bitcoin gambler more susceptible:
– trustless payments. Traditional bank deposits, wire transfers and even credit card payments can take time or require verification from either the casino or yourself. If you have bitcoins, you won’t face any problems depositing into a Bitcoin casino.
– instant deposits. Many Bitcoin casinos feature instant deposits, allowing you to play as soon as you spend bitcoins and broadcast your transaction.
– anonymous gambling. While you may have to wait at online casinos to verify or even register accounts, some Bitcoin casinos let you gamble immediately, without needing to verify.
– quick play micro betting. Most online casinos won’t let you bet less than a dollar, with pennies only available at slots. Bitcoin casinos usually feature games that let you bet 1 satoshi (at today’s rate, about 1/300th of a cent!). They also feature auto-betting allowing up to scores of bets every minute.
In simple terms, problem gamblers can very quickly play at Bitcoin casinos. Small amounts are also deceptively crippling. On Martingale strategies with auto betting, a starting bet of 100 satoshi can escalate very quickly to millions.
Clues that you might be facing an addiction
It’s important to pay attention to your gambling habits and identify these signs that may indicate a gambling addiction:
1. having trouble keeping to limits – you keep depositing more bitcoins every time you bust trying to chase losses. Or you set higher targets when you win.
2. you spend money you can’t afford – using your credit card to buy more bitcoins or borrowing to gamble.
3. people express concern about your gambling – your friends are worried about you, or your fellow gamblers tell you to take a break.
Think you might be addicted? Seek help.
Gambling addiction is a very real problem – aside from the real financial issues you’ll face, it can take a toll on your personal life. If you notice any of the signs or symptoms above, do something about it!
1.Let the casinos and other gamblers know about your problem
Most crypto-only Bitcoin casinos are run by owners who are very much part of their casino community, or have support staff who are. They’ll gladly help you control your habits if you reach out. There are some cases of casino admins denying further deposits from account holders who voluntarily opt out of gambling but still want to interact with other players. In extreme cases, some sites block Ips, preventing users (on request) from playing.
2. Give someone you trust control over your Bitcoin
If you still want to gamble but need more control over limits, you could entrust someone close with your bitcoins and make them aware of your gambling budget. Be it your spouse or partner or best friend, they can help ensure you only spend what you can afford to lose.
3. Seek professional help
If you’re gambling in England or Wales, you can contact the National Problem Gambling Clinic. Elsewhere, visit Gambling Therapy or Gamblers Anonymous to speak with other gamblers who support others with gambling addiction.
Remember, gambling is supposed to be fun. When it stops being enjoyable, stop.