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Gambling information, advice and support for young people

Gambling: Top tips for keeping safe

Most of the time, gambling does not become a problem for people who choose to take part. However, some people might develop a gambling habit that starts to have a negative impact on their life.

We’ve worked with problem gamblers for over 20 years, and have found that there are some top tips we recommend to make sure that every time you gamble you stay safe.

Top Tips

  • Set a money limit and stick to it – have a look at your finances and see how much you could spend without jeopardising other responsibilities
  • Set a time limit and stick to it – try to allocate a time when you will leave the venue or website to help you stick to your budget
  • Expect to lose and treat any winnings as a bonus – treat gambling just like going to a concert or out to eat: don’t expect to get your money back at the end
  • Have other hobbies and interests – make sure that you keep up with other hobbies and interests
  • Be open and honest about your gambling – if you find yourself struggling to be honest about what you’ve spent or how you’re spending your time, consider finding some help
  • Understand the game, odds and house edge – check out our jargon buster; knowledge is power! 
  • Only use cash – a great way to stay on budget
  • Quit when you are ahead
  • Don’t gamble alone – making sure there is someone who can take care of you is a great idea

Things to Avoid                                                                                     

  • Borrowing money to gamble – it’s not advisable to borrow money or lend someone money to gamble, and there is no guarantee you will get it back
  • Developing strategies for gambling games – the definition of gambling means there is always a chance you could lose more money
  • Trying to win back money you have lost – this might seem like a good idea, but can be a slippery slope
  • Keep playing until you get lucky – by then it might be too late
  • Believe you will win – confidence is key with lot’s of things in life, but not gambling. In fact it’s probably better to expect you will lose!
  • Gambling for a long time without a break – always take a break
  • Gamble as a way to cope with bad feelings – gaming when you’re feeling low might seem like a distraction, but might make the problem worse in the long run

If you’re worried about your gambling, or would like some more advice, please get in touch via our helpline. We know about gambling and we care about you.