Online gambling is popular in the UK and many people enjoy gambling responsibly, but as with so many online activities, there are risks involved. For most people playing at online casinos is fun, and that is all it will ever be. They have a great time gambling online for an hour or so to relax after work and then they move onto something different, and it has no negative effects on their lives. They stick to their limits and only gamble with money they can afford to lose.
But then there are the few people who should not be gambling at all because they are addicts and, once they start, they can’t stop. They become obsessed and their gambling addiction becomes all-consuming, having a detrimental effect on their lives, bankrupting them and breaking up their families in the process.
If you are one of these people who really should not gamble, then you need to stay away from online gambling sites. For gambling addicts, this can be really hard as there are so many online casinos and they are easy to access and join. Fortunately, if you have a gambling problem, there are ways that you can deal with it and you don’t have to do it alone. There are a number of options that you can use to exclude yourself from online casinos and gambling sites.
Self-exclusion from one specific gambling site
All online gambling websites in the UK have to offer a self-exclusion option. This is usually found in the “Responsible Gambling” or “Personal Settings” section of the website where you can also find out more about “Time-Out”, “Reality Check” and “Cooling Off” options and how each one works.
If you are a member of only one gambling site or you have a favourite site that you visit far too often, then you can self-exclude from just that one site. You can contact the casino through their 24/7 live chat, and they will talk you through the process.
Or you can simply go to the “Personal Settings” or “Responsible Gambling” section and choose to activate the “Self-Exclusion” option. You can choose to be excluded from the site for anything from 6 months to five years, or even permanently.
Self-exclusion from all gambling sites
GAMSTOP (www.gamstop.co.uk) is a multi-operator self-exclusion scheme available to players in the UK and Northern Ireland. It does not cover all online gambling sites, but their coverage is quite extensive and with more and more online casinos becoming part of GAMSTOP, it won’t be long before this becomes a national online self-exclusion scheme.
But until this is a reality, you still need to self-exclude individually from the online casinos or gambling sites that you frequent, and which are not part of GAMSTOP. Check the casino's homepage to see if they are a member of GAMSTOP.
Online gambling should be fun and exciting, but it needs to be enjoyed responsibly. Unfortunately, in some cases it can become highly addictive and if you know that you are an irresponsible gambler, then you need to self-exclude and seek professional help as soon as possible.