The countdown continues to the launch of legal betting in Ohio. It’s great news for gamblers and those companies that operate sportsbooks like BetMGM or Bet365. Also pleased will be the state which will receive potentially millions of dollars in gambling tax revenue. There are concerns over responsible Igaming in Ohio and the dangers of gambling harm.

Igaming in Ohio

Online gambling

Online gambling in particular is an area in which it is easy to become addicted to gambling. It’s available 24/7 and betting can be carried out on your mobile devices. Losing track of time, continually making deposits into your account and trying to chase losses are all examples of irresponsible gambling.

It is important therefore that Ohio puts itself in a position where good advice on responsible gambling is given. Also required is a satisfactory level of treatment for those who do have problems with their gambling.

Last year a survey was carried out by the National Association of Administrators for Disordered Gambling Services (NAADGS). It looked at the responsible gambling budgets of US states. It was good and not-so-good news for Ohio.

They failed to make it into the top 10, finishing in 12th place. However, the 53 cents per capita spent on problem gambling initiatives and that was favorable as the national average was 40 cents.

That was before the state passed the law that has made sports betting legal. The number of people gambling is likely to increase once the sportsbooks launch in January.

gambling

There have of course been plenty of people gambling on sport. Even though sports betting hasn’t been legal in the state, they can still go to other states to legally bet. Many others bet with illegal sites and that’s where the problems of gambling harm are higher as is the risk of being subjected to fraudulent behavior.

Ohio does already offer a number of problem gambling services and programs that are giving invaluable help. Faith leaders have been given help on how to deal with people who have problems with their gambling.

There is also a problem gambling helpline and that’s important as it gives those in difficulty the opportunity to seek help and discuss what they are going through. Calling the helpline is a first step towards recovery. Those in trouble simply may not know about all the services that can help them. Making that call can change all of that.

For some callers it is treatment that they urgently need. Last year, 14 people who contacted the helpline did so because they were feeling suicidal. Developing a gambling problem can cause serious financial problems and depression.

The fact that this help is already in place is good to see. It’s not just the gamblers themselves who are using the helplines. Those who have friends, partners or relatives who may be having gambling problems also get in touch.

dangers of gambling

It’s not just betting on sports events that can cause problems. Playing slots and table games are the most common causes of gambling addiction. There’s easy access to them and a lot of money can be lost in a very short time.

There will be people who register with sportsbooks who will be completely new to the world of gambling. Helplines may have to brace themselves for an increase in the number of calls they receive next year. The admirable amounts being spent on dealing with gambling harm may also have to be increased.

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