Gambling can be a fantastic form of entertainment. However, there are risks associated with real money gambling. To avoid developing a gambling problem, it’s crucial to gamble responsibly.
In Singapore, several charitable organizations help individuals with gambling problems. If you suffer from gambling addiction or know someone who does, we recommend contacting the National Council on Problem Gambling for advice on what to do.
What is gambling addiction?
A person is gambling addicted when gambling is no longer entertaining and affects their private life and/or finances.
Typical signs of gambling addiction may include:
- Financial difficulties due to gambling away money.
- Absence from work, school, studies, or other important occasions to gamble instead.
- Borrowing money to gamble more.
- Lying to loved ones to continue gambling.
- Suffering from anxiety and depression due to gambling.
Preventive advice for gambling addiction
To avoid developing a gambling problem, there are several preventive measures you can implement. By following the advice below, you will greatly minimize the risk of developing a gambling problem.
- Know that anyone can develop a gambling problem. Many who now have a gambling problem once thought it could never happen to them.
- Gamble for the sake of entertainment. Winning is fun, but in reality, you’re buying entertainment. Gambling is not meant to be an investment or a sure way to win.
- Create an entertainment budget for gambling. Then only take money from your entertainment budget. Money for rent, food, loan repayments, or other necessary expenses should never be used for gambling.
- Use tools available at online casinos to set limits on daily, weekly, or monthly deposits. Setting a time limit can also be smart.
- Don’t use gambling to escape other problems in your life, like stress, loneliness, or depression. Also, avoid gambling while under the influence.
Getting Help in Singapore
If you or someone you know has developed a gambling problem, we recommend contacting an organization that helps with this. In Singapore, the National Council on Problem Gambling is the leading organization for assistance and prevention of gambling addiction. You can speak anonymously with their representatives via live chat or phone.
They can also help with remote treatment and support groups, as well as provide financial guidance if gambling has led to debt problems.
How to contact NCG to get help with gambling addiction:
- Live chat at https://www.ncpg.org.sg/
- Call 1800-6-668-668
Frequently Asked Questions about Gambling Addiction
Below, you can find answers to some of the most common questions about gambling problems.
How do I gamble responsibly?
You gamble responsibly by viewing gambling as a form of entertainment. I also recommend following the other advice above.
How to get help with gambling addiction?
You can get help from the National Council on Problem Gambling if you have a gambling problem.
How many people develop a gambling problem?
Statistics show that about 2-3% of those who start gambling will develop a problem or become addicted to gambling.
Isn’t it only weak people who become addicted to gambling?
No, absolutely not. All individuals who gamble have a greater or lesser risk of becoming addicted to gambling.
How do I know if someone is addicted to gambling?
Look for the signs mentioned above. These include financial problems due to gambling, absence from work, school, or special occasions to gamble, lying to loved ones, borrowing money to gamble more, and/or suffering from anxiety and depression due to gambling.
What do I do if I can’t stop gambling?
If you try but can’t stop gambling, it’s important to talk to someone about your problems. It could be one of your close ones, or anonymously through services like the National Council on Problem Gambling. Having someone to talk to about your problem will make it easier to stop.
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