Keep it Fun
Many different forms of gambling can be fun unless they start to affect other parts of your life.
Problem gambling is associated with a range of negative impacts on physical and mental health, including ill health, fatigue, co-related substance use and addiction, depression and suicide among others. This is of particular relevance to the Northwestern Health Unit, where rates of suicide and self-harm are already amongst the highest in the province, along with rates of substance misuse and other mental/behavioural disorders. (Source-NWHU Briefing Note-Gambling)
What is problem gambling?
The Canadian Public Health Association defines problem gambling as gambling behavior which includes continuous or periodic loss of control over gambling; preoccupation with gambling and money with which to gamble; irrational thinking; and continuation of activity despite adverse consequences.
Costs to the individual
The Responsible Gambling Council of Ontario states that people who struggle with gambling problems often experience serious social, emotional, financial and health consequences, in addition to legal and work-related problems. Gambling problems can mean the rent goes unpaid or mortgage payments fall into default. They can, and often do, lead to the loss of homes, the decimation of personal and retirement savings, the loss of funds for post-secondary education, family breakdown, job loss, and much more.
What you should know
Gambling is a leisure activity. Whether you or someone you know chooses to gamble, it’s important to understand that gambling comes with potentially serious risks. Because the fact is most people lose when they play the lottery, play a casino game, or place a bet. That’s why you, your family, and your friends should know how to protect yourselves when it comes to problem gambling (Source-RGCO). For tips about safer gambling and the things that you can do, click visit our Tips for Safer Gambling page.