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Responsible Gambling


What is Gambling?

Gambling is taking part in any game or activity in which you risk money or something of material value on something with an uncertain outcome. The hope is to win additional money or something of material value.

A Few Forms of Gambling

These are a few forms of gambling, not a comprehensive list.

  • Sports Betting
  • Buying a lottery ticket (including both drawing and instant tickets)
  • Casino Table Games
  • Online Casino Games
  • Video lottery terminals

Gambling Age in West Virginia

The minimum gambling age in West Virginia is 18 for lottery games, bingo, and racing. For sports betting and casino-style games, the minimum gambling age is 21.

What is Problem Gambling?

According to the National Council on Problem Gambling, it includes all gambling behavior patterns that compromise, disrupt or damage personal, family or vocational pursuits. Problem gambling can contribute to poor mental and physical health, loss of money, and problems with family, friends, and co-workers.

It is worth noting that the majority of people who choose to gamble do not ever experience any problems with it. These individuals play for fun, on an occasional basis, only bet money they can afford to lose, and know that they will most likely lose the money being wagered.

But for some people, gambling can lead to serious problems. Nationally, about 6% of college students have issues with problem gambling. That may seem small, but when applied to the enrollment at WVU, that equates to about 1,500 students.

If you think that you or someone you know has an issue with gambling, please contact the Carruth Center at (304) 293-4431 or call the National Problem Gambling Helpline Network at 1-800-GAMBLER.

Responsible Gambling Strategies:

If you're choosing to gamble, keep the following in mind:

  • Learn about the game you're playing, the odds, and the house edge.

  • Know the risks and respect your tolerance.

  • Don't depend on "good luck" strategies - they don't increase your chances of winning.

  • Set a budget and a time limit, and stick to it!

  • Only gamble with money that you have - never borrow money or use money intended for necessities.

  • Gamble with a friend and hold each other accountable.

  • Balance gambling with other recreational activities.

  • Remember - gambling is a form of entertainment, not a way to make money.

  • Take a break when gambling is no longer fun.

  • Expect to lose! There's a reason for the saying, "The House always wins."

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