How to Stop Gambling on Online Slots
Aside from the obvious financial cost, the emotional and psychological toll of gambling addiction can be tremendous. It can lead to feelings of shame, guilt, anxiety and anger. It can also trigger impulsive behavior. Fortunately, there are steps that can be taken to stop the cycle of gambling addiction.
Self-exclusion is a way for a person to ban themselves from in-person or online gambling for a set amount of time. The process can be initiated by contacting the gambling company directly or through a third-party. Many gambling websites offer a self-exclusion tool that can be used for up to five years. Some people find it helpful to keep a journal or diary of their feelings during this time. It can help to gain perspective and see how the addictive behaviour is impacting their lives.
Using an application that blocks access to online gambling is another effective way of preventing gambling. Some of these apps are free, such as Gamban, while others are paid. Some people may choose to use a smartphone without internet access or to get rid of all mobile devices altogether. In this case, they will need to be prepared to communicate with family and friends in person, perhaps through text or social media.
While it is important to avoid places and activities that trigger the urge to gamble, it is equally important to create new habits that will help replace the negative ones. This could include rekindling an old hobby or trying something completely new. Many people who struggle with gambling have a hard time occupying their minds, so finding a replacement activity is critical for long-term success.
It is also vital to break the myths about gambling that fuel addiction. For example, the idea that it is “normal” to win or lose a certain amount is not true. There are no guarantees in any casino game, whether it be slots or blackjack. The house always wins in the long run, and casinos become huge and opulent by taking in more money than they pay out.
Some people find it helpful to keep meticulous records of their gambling patterns, including time spent and money in and out. This can provide a realistic picture of the problem and be used to identify triggers. For instance, if a person finds themselves visiting the same websites or socializing in certain venues, it is often a sign that there is an issue. In addition to recording the data, some people benefit from using an app such as Freedom, which allows users to block dangerous websites for a set period of time. This can be a more sustainable alternative to the willpower-based method of simply trying not to visit these sites. It can be difficult to change your pattern of behaviour at a moment’s notice, so it is important to put barriers in place that are as strong as possible. This is especially effective for people who have a high level of addiction.