The Nebraska Gamblers Assistance Program wants you to know the gambling can be as addictive as illegal substances or alcohol. If you have a gambling plan, you stay in control of the time and money you spend on gambling to reduce your exposure to a gambling addiction.

Regret over gambling losses is universal:
hear what real problem gamblers have to say



If you gamble, have a plan.

  1. Set money and time limits and stick to them – losing track of time and money gambled is a red flag your gambling has entered the danger zone
  2. Take regular breaks – continuous gambling is encouraged by the gambling industry because the longer you gamble, the more you lose
  3. Balance gambling with other entertainment – if gambling is your only form of entertainment, you’ve crossed the line from gambling as entertainment to gambling as problem
  4. Never chase your losses – “chasing one’s losses” is gambling slang for repeated gambling to win back the money you have bet and lost. The gambling industry loves people who keep gambling in the attempt to recover their gambling losses because the more you gamble, the more you lose
  5. Never think of gambling as a way to make money – think of gambling as an entertainment expense – like going to the movies or out to dinner
  6. Do not gamble to escape – bad gambling decisions happen when you are lonely, bored, stressed out or anxious
  7. Only gamble with money you can afford to lose – you are experiencing out of control gambling if you gamble with rent or grocery money
  8. Leave your credit and debit cards at home – your plan is that when the cash is gone, it’s time to stop gambling
  9. Limit drinking when gambling – you already know that alcohol and drugs cloud judgment
  10. Learn from your past – if you have gambled to the point of feeling anxious, guilty or uncomfortable in the past, that is your control point telling you to walk away

Know the Risks

A preoccupation with gambling and the excitement of gambling with increasing risk. Pathological gamblers are unable to cut back on their gambling, despite the fact that it may lead them to lie, steal, or lose a significant relationship, job or opportunity.

Know the Warning Signs

  • Always think about gambling
  • Lie about gambling
  • Spend work or family time gambling
  • Feel bad after gambling but do not quit
  • Gamble with money you need for other things


Before you expose yourself to the gambling, or gaming, industry, understand that...

  1. The gambling industry is in the business of taking as much of your money in the shortest time as often as possible.
  2. The gambling industry seeks to increase the amount of time and money you spend (fast and easy) on a device or game because the more you gamble, the more money you lose, the more money they make.
  3. The human brain is unnaturally stimulated under the influence of this fast and easy gambling to release artificially high levels of a naturally occurring brain chemical – the brain’s reward system that teaches from infancy healthy behaviors when released at normal levels
  4. As the brain begins to crave the artificial doses of the brain chemical released by fast and easy gambling, a person under this level of gambling influence separates from the values and principles of their lives.
  5. Repeated gambling to chase this artificial “high” – particularly when under duress - is a key element of gambling addiction and all the family conflicts, financial crises, and emotional distress it causes.

Careful. The gambling industry seeks to hack your brain and hijack your life.