Online betting is one of the most enjoyable activities, as long as it stays a healthy habit. However, recent reports show that it can negatively influence players who do not know where to take a break. Being safe is paramount when you are in your favourite bookmaker, which goes beyond your data and privacy. And this is where the concept of how to stop betting becomes crucial.
But which is the best way to control or quit betting altogether? We will review every available method to protect your financial and personal life from any undesired effects of betting. Exclusion schemes, responsible gaming features, blocking software, payment limits and more are analysed together on tangibles that signify that you need to restrain your betting.
What are the warning signs to stop betting
The first person to evaluate whether your habits are healthy is you. Luckily, a few factors can tell almost conclusively if you have to stop betting online. First, it’s important to know that very few people have become rich from gambling. You can earn some money, but if you want to become a millionaire, then it will likely not happen. An associated factor is becoming emotional and starting chasing losses. When you are in a bad run, it’s better to stop and cool down than hope that you will make Lady Luck change course.
If you visit your bookmaker when you are stressed, it is another red flag that you must stop betting on sports. Risking your money is not wise when you have had a rough day at work or a family issue. Likewise, astute players act precautiously and set a loss limit. Thus, even if you find yourself vulnerable, you will not mess up your finances.
Which are the main reasons to quit betting
You may have gone past the signs and did not notice them. So, how can you tell now that you probably have to quit betting? Losing the money you can’t afford is a prime reason. Letting online betting negatively affect your family and social life can add to the trouble, and the above could severely impact your mental health.
The first reason needs no introduction, as gambling comes with the risk of losing your money. Sometimes, that loss gets out of control, and the player goes into debt, which can ruin his financial status. Getting a loan or mortgage becomes almost impossible, and even daily expenses can become a headache.
When you are married and have children, it is consequential that your free time is minimal. If you spend it on betting, the rest of the family might find that troubling, which could be the beginning of domestic issues. That alone should make you stop sports betting or at least rein in it.
Giving more and more hours to your bookmaker means spending less time with your friends and your social circle. After a while, that could translate to isolation, as your pals will likely not appreciate ignoring them because you could not miss live betting.
One of the above factors can have an unfortunate effect on your mental state, let alone a combination. More and more clinics, especially in the UK and other countries, are dealing with depression in punters. They have also added courses on how to stop betting, so you will not end up on the troubling side.
Are there any tools that can help you quit betting
You decided to take the necessary steps to quit betting. Great, but waking up and saying that you will stop will probably not last long. The good news is that several tools and apps can make you limit or outright block betting sites. Let’s see them one by one.
Every bookie must have at least some basic responsible gaming features to protect vulnerable members. A self-exclusion scheme is a standard which allows closing your account from a few days to indefinitely. There is usually an option never to reopen it, and the sportsbook must adhere to your wish.
A Timeout will temporarily disable your account for a few days if you want to take a break. And a relatively new tool, the Reality Check, will tell you how long you have been betting after a specific time or activity. Pretty useful if you lose track when you need to quit sports betting.
Third-party software is the best solution for a total block on gambling sites. Such programs will prohibit access on almost every bookmaker, with a list that gets updated often. While there are some tricks to bypass that block, they are generally considered one of the safest approaches on how to stop sports betting. Betblocker and GamCare are the most popular free apps, while NetNanny, BetFilter & Gamban offer high-level protection but come at a cost.
Some countries have taken responsible gaming more seriously due to rising addiction levels or a local mentality. Therefore, they have introduced state-run schemes to exclude players from regulated bookmakers in the country. The way they work is simple, you visit the authority’s website and register with your details.
After verification, you are effectively blocked from every bookie with a licence. Remember, though, that restriction does not bind unlicensed bookmakers. Gamstop in the UK, ROFUS in Denmark and Spelpaus in Sweden are prime examples of such schemes.
Another option to control your spending is to contact your financial institution and ask for a gambling limit or block on your credit/debit card. Once activated, it will only allow betting transactions up to your desired limit or deny them if you have asked. While effective for cards, it does not do anything to other payment methods like wallets and vouchers.
How to quit sports betting: Other alternatives
You can opt for alternative measures if the above have failed you or you find yourself in another situation. Since problem gambling affects more and more people, we provide several tips that can start with cognitive action to organisations that specialise in how to stop betting.
Come to grips with the problem: The first step should always be that you realise having an issue with gambling and work towards fixing it. If you tick any boxes we describe in the signs that should alarm you to stop betting, it might be time for some action.
Postpone Gambling: Aside from your standard betting patterns, most players lose control when they let urges and cravings get over them. Hence, it is important to take control of your emotions. When you realise that urges come and go and do not last long, it will be easier to overcome them.
Find Substitutes to Gambling: Talking with a friend, some physical activity, travelling or taking up a new hobby can be great substitutes to get your mind away from betting. Imagine the new skills and experiences you can acquire and the money you save.
Seek Professional Help: If none of the above seems to help, it might be time to consult a professional. Dedicated clinics offer services on how to stop betting online, where you can also meet with other people experiencing the same issue. A local therapist or counsellor can also help.
Should I stop betting
Gambling for the fun of the game or to get some adrenaline rushing is no big deal and should be seen as a harmless hobby. But it could be time to stop betting when it starts to cause financial or emotional pain to you or those around you.
If you find yourself even in an initial stage of what could be problem gambling, it is better to act early. Setting limits and taking regular timeouts could foolproof you from going in the wrong direction. And remember, if betting becomes a compulsion rather than enjoyment, it is probably time to quit.
Several stages could provide red flags. Imagining that you will become rich from gambling is the most frequent one. Chasing losses also mean you do not think rationally, as players lose more in such cases. Moreover, make sure never to bet when you are under stress.
The most dominant reason is when they lose more money than they can afford, hence going into debt. Ignoring your family or isolating yourself from your friends are signs that you might need to stop. Your mental health can also go into a poor state if your betting habits go unchecked.
You have several features on your hand regarding limiting or stopping betting. The most drastic one is a self-exclusion which could be for a few weeks or forever. A timeout from a few hours to a few days will help clear your mind, while a Reality Check can work as an alarm to bring you back to the real world.
Sure you can, as several programs and apps block thousands of online bookmakers. GamCare and Betblocker are the way to go if you opt for a free solution. For paid apps BetFilter, Gamban & NetNanny successfully prohibit access to sportsbooks.
The foundation is to know that your betting gets out of hand. Once you grasp that, you can choose to spend your time elsewhere. Going out with a friend, starting some sport, or a new hobby will make you forget about betting or better control your urges.