With students descending on university campuses once again for this year’s Freshers Week, Ciaran, from GamCare’s Youth team highlights the key signs students should be mindful of when gambling at university.
Many freshers will naturally be looking to dive into new experiences as they kickstart their university life. And while some students may think gambling could be fun or exciting, there are things to be mindful of to ensure it doesn’t go too far, particularly with new student loans and financial commitments later in the year.
For any students who are gambling at university, here are five signs to be mindful of:
1. Preoccupation – Often thinking about or planning to gamble can be one of the early warning signs that gambling could be harmful. It can affect your studies by distracting focus away from assignments or taking your attention away from important lectures.
2. Withdrawal – Removing yourself from social and professional situations so that you can place a bet is another warning signal that your gambling might be going too far, and that the urges to gamble are potentially harming other areas of your life.
3. Escape – Student life can be overwhelming at times, and you might feel like you want to escape it for a while. Using gambling as a coping mechanism is a sign of harmful gambling and can lead to losing significant amounts of money.
4. Chasing losses – The main motive of gambling is to win money but during a gambling session, that motive can change. Chasing losses is where your motive from winning money changes to winning back the money you have already lost. This can be dangerous and lead to significant losses.
5. Lying – If you find yourself hiding how much you are spending or lying about the amount of time you are gambling, or perhaps asking for money to cover bills that you are spending. These are just some signs that gambling is harming your life, and possibly risking your relationships with family and friends.
If you are experiencing any of these issues and want to talk to someone, call the National Gambling Helpline now on 0808 8020 133 and speak to one of our advisors.