Problem Gambling Warning Signs

  • Have you ever felt the need to bet more and more money?
  • Have you ever lied to people important to you about how much you gambled?
  • Have you repeated unsuccessful efforts to control, cut back or stop gambling?
  • Do you gamble as a way of escaping emotional or physical pain?
  • Have you ever relied on others to provide money to relieve a desperate financial situation caused by gambling?
  • Have you ever jeopardized or lost a significant relationship, job or career opportunity because of gambling?
  • Have you gambled to get money with which to pay debts or to solve other financial problems?
  • Have you borrowed money to finance your gambling?
  • Has gambling ever made your home life unhappy?
  • Do you gamble to try to get your money back?

Responsible Gambling Guidelines

We hope that, if you choose to gamble, you will make conscious, informed decisions about the role you want gambling to play in your life. The following are some suggestions for personal guidelines for responsible gambling:

  • Set a money limit and stick to it.
  • Decide before you go not only what you can afford to lose, but how much you want to spend. Do not change your mind after losing.
  • Set a time limit and stick to it.
  • Decides how much of your time you want to allow for gambling. Leave when you reach the time limit, whether you are winning or losing.
  • Make it a rule not to gamble on credit. Do not borrow to gamble, including getting cash advances on your credit card.
  • Consider any losses the cost of recreation
  • Expect to lose and treat any winnings as a bonus.
  • Don't gamble as a way to cope with emotional or physical pain. Gambling is meant to be entertainment and should not replace coping skills.
  • Create balance in your life. Gambling should not interfere with or substitute for friends, family, work, or other worthwhile activities.
  • Avoid trying to win back lost money. Chances are, the more you try to recoup your losses, the larger your losses will be.
  • If gambling is no longer "fun," ask yourself why you are still "playing."

Signs and Symptoms

Gamblers Anonymous 20 Questions


Did you ever lose time from work or school due to gambling?


Has gambling ever made your home life unhappy?


Did gambling affect your reputation?


Have you ever felt remorse after gambling?


Did you ever gamble to get money with which to pay debts or otherwise solve financial difficulties?


Did gambling cause a decrease in your ambition or efficiency?


After losing did you feel you must return as soon as possible and win back your losses?


After a win did you have a strong urge to return and win more?


Did you often gamble until your last dollar was gone?


Did you ever borrow to finance your gambling?


Have you ever sold anything to finance gambling?


Were you reluctant to use "gambling money" for normal expenditures?


Did gambling make you careless of the welfare of yourself or your family?


Did you ever gamble longer than you had planned?


Have you ever gambled to escape worry or trouble?


Have you ever committed, or considered committing, an illegal act to finance gambling?


Did gambling cause you to have difficulty in sleeping?


Do arguments, disappointments or frustrations create within you an urge to gamble?


Did you ever have an urge to celebrate any good fortune by a few hours of gambling?


Have you ever considered self-destruction or suicide as a result of your gambling?



Most compulsive gamblers will answer yes to at least seven of these questions.

Become educated about the warning signs of problem gambling. The more you know, the better choices you can make. For free confidential information and referral regarding a gambling problem, call  800.NEXT.STEP (800.639.8783) or visit: http://www.problemgambling.az.gov/