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Slot Machine Addiction: What You Do Not Know About Slots Can Harm You

Updated on November 1, 2015

Slot Machine And Pokie Addiction

Slot machine and pokie addiction is increasing throughout the world due to easy access to gambling venues. Almost all states in the U.S have government sponsored slot machine gambling, and for many it is just a hop, skip, and a jump from their primary residence.

Slots and pokie addiction can be devastating for people. Called “the crack cocaine of gambling addiction, this form of gambling has the highest rate of addiction in the industry. It can consume a person very quickly and people have been known to get addicted in as little as a year. This is a much quicker rate of addiction over other forms of gambling. It happens almost 4 times as fast.

People can have devastating financial losses from this addiction. Many have over 50 grand in debt, primarily due to slots and pokie gambling.

The reason that the suicide rate for gambling is the highest of all addictions is because of the horrific consequences that result in financial ruin. Many see no way out, and they decide to end their life.

With easy access to ATM machines inside the casino or slots club or venue, many addicted gamblers not only play until their last dollar is gone, but also withdraw money from savings and credit cards. This is what fuels the fire to financial loss and despair.

When players become addicted, they are not playing to win as much as to “stay in the zone” as the industry coins this. Playing in the zone is a place where an individuals’ troubles just fade away, and the person is at one with the machine.

People vulnerable to this are the poor, people with a lot of problems wanting to escape, and older individuals who have experiences a lot of loss.

People play just to stay in action because of the pleasurable feelings that accompany play. Also known as “the gamblers high” these feelings can be very potent and highly addictive. This is why people with gambling problems keep playing and chasing their losses. They do not want to come down and “crash” from their very pleasurable gamblers high.

Intermittent Reinforcement

One of the ways that slots and pokies gambling creates addiction is the fast rate of play and what is also called “intermittent reinforcement”. This means that the gambler will only win every few spins, and never knows which hand will pay out and which ones will not.

This can help to shape the behavior of the gambler because it keeps him or her glued to the machine, waiting for their next unexpected win. Not sure when it will happen, this keeps the gambler playing and playing. It can actually become an obsession because of the random nature of the wins.

These new age slot machines also produce what is called as “losses disguised as wins”. The gambler playing the slot will get many of these LDW throughout their slot play. Bells and whistles will play, even though the gambler still won less than their initial wager. Example: Joe bets $1.00 on a hand in slots and earns .40 cents on the bet. The bells and whistles make Joe think he won, when he really lost .60 cents on the bet.

The Lights And The Sounds Of Slot Machines

Slot machines and pokies have a lot of lights, sounds, and pleasurable music when winning, and even when losing. Many of the machines are themed after popular movies or television shows. Some seats actually have speakers built into these. It can be a very exciting experience for the player, and very intoxicating to say the least.

The makers of the slot machines want to create an entertaining experience and do whatever it takes to keep the player playing on the machine. In the industry, this is known a “time on device.

These new age slot machines definitely do the trick, and are much different than the old single line machines based in reels. There is really no comparison whatsoever. These machines are a whole different animal than the old fashioned machines. These are also much more addicting as well.

Slot Machine Bonus Rounds

Bonus rounds are one of the most popular aspects of the new multi-line digital slot machines. Many of these bonus rounds consist of free games, or special “games within the game”.

When player are engaged in a slot machine he or she waits for these bonus rounds to come up and become very excited when this happens. Sometimes bonus rounds pay a lot, however, sometimes these bonuses turn out to be duds, and very disappointing to the player. Then the player waits with baited breathe for the next bonus round to come up, hoping it will be better.

Sometimes gambler will spend hundreds on a machine before getting a bonus round because this is what he or she is seeking. It can become a crazy chase, and a very expensive one at that.

Playing To Extinction

This is the industry term for playing a machine (s) until your last dollar is gone. Machine makers and owners of casino and slot machines/pokies have this as the end goal. They want to keep people playing, and playing, and playing. This is until he or she is flat broke. Casino owners say that this is not the case.

The reality is that slots and pokies are cash cows for casinos, pubs, and racinos. And these new high tech machines create the revenue they are looking for.

Many high end casino officials will say that this is not true. That they do not want people with gambling problems in their casino playing until their last dollar is gone.

The truth is, however, that casinos do earn most of their revenue from problem gamblers Different studies show different percentages, however, the average is well over 50 percent .

This is a sad fact, and many people, especially poor people have casinos and racinos very close to home. These individuals see gambling as a possible way to earn riches, and it is not the case.

The House Always Wins

People must remember that with gambling, the house ALWAYS wins. The longer one plays the slots or the pokies, the chances of losing increase exponentially.

For those people with gambling related problems or addiction, they will never win because they play to play and never leave.

Nobody can ever come out ahead as a slots or pokies gambler unless one plays for a very short time and then leaves.

Unfortunately that only happens in select cases, and is never the case for someone with a slots or pokies gambling addiction.

What To Do If You Have A Slots Or Pokies Addiction

If you are struggling with an addiction to these machines, you are not alone. Because of the easy access to casinos and these machines, many people throughout the world are struggling. We are just starting to see many of these consequences, many of which are dire.

Remember that there is help available for you. Also remember that it takes time to beat gambling addiction and relapses and lapses are par for the course.

Gamblers Anonymous is one option, as well as a program called Smart Recovery. In addition, individual counselors who specialize in addictions are also available.

If you suffer financial ramifications and consequences from a slots or pokies addiction, please look for credit counseling that is not for profit.

Many of the debt settlement, debt consolidation companies are for profit companies that can actually put you in more debt than you were before.

There is no one way to get through an addiction to slots or pokies, however, it can be done. I recently had a lapse and I am back on track again. I accept that setbacks are part of any addiction. I also know that I will never give up on myself and beating this.

Casinos with slots and pokies cannot enhance our lives in any way if we are addicted or problem gamblers. The best thing is to just stay away.

Slots and pokies addiction does not have to ruin your life, or the lives of your loved ones.


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