It is estimated that 80% of problem gamblers in Australia play the pokies. Slot machines are said to be the most addictive form of gambling. This is partly due to the way the games work and also due to the music and sounds. The games are developed with an aim to keep you playing.
Because pokies are so widespread in Australia the amount of problem gamblers is increasing at a rapid rate. Current estimates put the number at around 300,000 people who lose an average of $12,000 per year.
It took a long time for the state governments to act on this information. In 1995 they put a freeze on the amount of poker machines for each state and in 2000 they brought in new laws restricting the advertising of pokies.
Considering the fact that it is the governments who make the most money out of the pokies these measures have not made much of a difference.
Help for Problem Gamblers
If you suspect that you have a gambling problem there are many ways to get help. Below are 20 questions from Gamblers Anonymous. If you answer yes to a few of the questions you should consider seeking help.
GA 20 Questions
- Have you ever played until you ran out of money?
- Have you ever played for longer than you had originally planned?
- Have you ever borrowed money to gamble with?
- Have you ever sold anything to finance your gambling
- After losing have you had an urge to play again to win back your losses?
- After winning have you had an urge to win more?
- Have you ever lost time from work due to gambling?
- Has gambling ever reduced your ambitions for life?
- Have you ever felt remorse after a gambling session?
- Has your gambling ever made your life at home unhappy?
- Has gambling effected your reputation?
- Have you ever gambled to solve financial problems?
- Have you been reluctant to use gambling money for other expenses?
- Has gambling ever made you careless of your welfare or your family's?
- Have negative emotions give you an urge to gamble?
- Has good fortune ever given you an urge to play the pokies?
- Have you ever considered harming yourself as a result of gambling?
- Have you ever committed an illegal act to finance gambling?
- Has gambling caused you to have difficulty sleeping?
- Have you ever gambled to escape thoughts of worry?
Where to get Help
The following links all lead to sites that offer help for people who are problem gamblers. If you answered yes to more than five of the questions listed above then we highly recommend that you visit the sites below to see how they can help you regain control over your gambling.
- Gamblers Anonymous (www.gansw.org.au)
- Gambling Help NSW (www.gamblinghelp.nsw.gov.au)
- Gambling Help Online (www.gamblinghelponline.org.au)
- Problem Gambling Victoria (www.problemgambling.vic.gov.au)
- Problem Gambling SA (www.problemgambling.sa.gov.au)
- Wesley Mission (www.wesleymission.org.au)
- Gambling Treatment (www.stvincents.com.au)
- Pathological Gambling category at Dmoz.org (www.dmoz.org)
- Gambling Addiction category at Yahoo! (www.yahoo.com)
Here at OnlinePokies.com we are firmly committed to responsible gambling and believe that all gambling should be fun. All of the online gaming sites that we list let players set their own limits and also have self exclusion policies where you can ban yourself from playing.
We highly recommend setting deposit limits before you start playing which will ensure that you stick to the limits you have set and keep things fun.
Tips for Parents
When you play online you will have a casino account that you have to log into to play. It is important that you keep these accounts secure to avoid any chance that children may access your account and play. We suggest doing the following things,
- Never tick the automatically log in button.
- Choose a password that is not easy for your kids to guess.
- Don't leave casinos open and logged in when not at your PC.
- Use filtering software to protect your kids from adult content.
Gambling is an activity for adults only and you must be over the age of 18 to play pokies both offline and online. All of the gambling sites listed at OnlinePokies.com have KYC (Know Your Customer) processes in place that confirm players are in fact over the age of 18.