Playing Responsibly: Safety Tips for Vets Who Love Gambling Online


Gambling could be a fun activity and many veterans are easily drawn into it. This is especially for the ones who are in touch with the latest technological advancements. Thanks to technology, vets don’t even have to travel to gambling hotspots to be able to play any casino game. They can easily enjoy a game of slots or card games without leaving their homes.

As long as there is internet and a capable device, be it a smartphone or tablet, anyone should be able to access online casinos. In the US, it’s federally acceptable to gamble online as long as the operator is allowed to offer its services locally or if the casino is based offshore.

However, there have been studies and research that found evidence on how gambling can negatively impact military veterans. There are multiple factors that are at play when it comes to this, but like any other gambler, gambling can be attractive when online casino bonuses are hard to resist. When you have the money to spend, the best thing to do is to spend it wisely by taking advantage of different promos and bonuses.

Vets and Problem Gambling

On the American Journal on Addictions was a gambling study involving nearly 2,000 bets from the VA centers and community clinics in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Minneapolis. The study was headed by two doctors names Dr. Joe Westermeyer from the Minneapolis VA Medical Center and Jose Canive from the Albuquerque VA Medical Center.

The report said, “The prevalence rates of gambling problems and pathological gambling among veterans receiving VA health care exceeded those rates reported in the general population by two to four times. Compared to other populations, female and younger veterans were at particularly high risk.”

The report also found that the problems could eventually worsen because the proportion of problem gamblers to pathological gamblers was high. The report explained, “Many gamblers may still be in the early stages of their problematic gambling careers. The prevalence of pathological gambling may yet increase notably among veterans in the coming years.”

It was explained that the vets showed a 2 percent lifetime prevalence rate of pathological gambling. That is double the 1 percent rate in the country’s overall population. The lifetime prevalence rate of problematic gambling behaviors on vets is at 8.8 percent.

Dr. Westermeyer emphasized how important it is for people to look into this problem. Westermeyer said, “These findings imply that the VA health care system should consider screening for problem gambling and pathological gambling. Developing low-cost, efficacious, preventive interventions is also warranted.”

NCPG Executive Director, Keith S. Whyte, also expressed his concerns about the issue. Whyte said, “Gambling addiction is a serious health problem that affects veterans and active-duty service members. It is highly co-occurring with other serious conditions and complicates the treatment of these disorders. In addition, gambling addiction has disastrous consequences for the veteran and his or her family.”

Whyte also presented statistics as evidence. There are studies involving vets with the conclusion that around 10 percent of the participants are pathological or problem gamblers. There was also a community survey that found how 9 percent of American Indians and 4 percent of Hispanics had a gambling problem at some point in their lives.

Whyte expressed the importance of helping vets with problems. He said, “Problem gambling programs may provide cost savings for VHA through improved recovery rates, decreased demand in current substance abuse and mental health care programs, and a reduction in the social costs generated by untreated problem and pathological gamblers.

“Most importantly, it will ensure veterans and their families receive the best possible services and enjoy the highest quality of life possible.”

Safety Measures

It’s generally safe to gamble online nowadays and one’s safety will also heavily rely on the person himself. To avoid gambling problems, it’s always best to set a limit and stick to it. Create a separate account for gambling activities if possible and avoid using credit to play real money games.

Know the risks of gambling and learn how to assess the odds of you winning a particular game. Learn how online casino games work and what RTPs are. Myths like winning and losing streaks should also be debunked by now.

When signing up with an online casino, never ever deal with unlicensed operators. It’s always best to read online review sites for you to get a feel of what an operator is like. When it comes to gambling, only use money that you can afford to lose.


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