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The size of the online sports betting industry keeps growing. In the United States alone, the number of online sports bettors was 19 million in 2022. This figure is estimated to exceed 23 million next year. If you have not yet joined their ranks, it is worth reading this article to think hard about it.
It is extremely tempting to bet. When people gamble in moderation, they can enjoy it a lot. When they overdo it, chances are they will negatively impact both their health and pockets.
Ironically, when people bet, they don’t think about losing money. Instead, they start relishing the win they do not have. When betting becomes an addiction, it poses serious risks to your health and well-being. Let’s unpack how you can benefit from gambling without impacting your mental health negatively.
There is no type of addiction that is good for your psyche. When you become entirely dependent on the forces you cannot control, you put stock in something that has a life of its own, with you being a puppet that can be easily manipulated. Many scientists call for defining pathological gambling as a gambling addiction.
If you can’t resist the temptation to bet, one thing you should do, at a minimum, is to go through reliable and trustworthy reviews of online casinos and gambling websites at Best Casino Play. The reviews will help protect you from choosing fraudulent websites and scams. They will also give great insight into the websites with a broader range of options and games.
A lot of scientific research has been carried out to explore how gambling and online betting impacts our brains, mental health, and behavior. Below is a list of symptoms you are likely to experience or demonstrate when you gamble a lot:
● Preoccupation & tolerance
Preoccupation occurs when you do not gamble at random. Instead, you start planning for your next gambling experience. It gradually becomes part and parcel of your daily routine. You also start reminiscing about past experiences, ruing mistakes, and hoping for better gambling strategies. You also start looking for higher-risk and higher-stakes wagers.
● Tolerance & chasing
When you try to take a break or quit, you experience complete irritability. It makes it near impossible to keep tabs on your gambling experience. Some players keep going back to gamble more because they think they can win next time around.
● Loss of control
If you overdo it, you are likely to lose control. This does not bode well for your experience. It is also a clear sign that you should take a break.
As noted above, online sports betting does not have to be a negative experience. When practiced prudently, you can actually use gambling for your brain, improving a number of cognitive functions. You should be aware of these benefits, aiming to make the most of them without jeopardizing your mental health. Here are some of the key benefits you should look out for.
● Improved logical and strategic thinking
Online betting improves your logical and strategic thinking because you cannot leave anything to chance.
● Improved reaction speed
More often than not, you need to make quick decisions. There is no time for lengthy deliberations. If you want to win, you should act quickly.
● Improved socialization
Getting to know other people is another big advantage. Keep making connections and enjoy new relationships.
● Improved memory
To succeed, you need to remember a lot. This includes your moves as well as the moves and bets of other players. You should also be able to remember the right kind of data when needed.
● Improved capacity for associative thinking
A lot depends on your ability to make connections and see linkages where others fail to notice them.
Online sports betting impacts your mental health in different ways. When you turn it into an addition, the impact is most likely to be negative. When you do it in moderation, you can enjoy a number of benefits for many years to come.
Mark Wooten is a professional writer, researcher, and student coach. Throughout his career, he has been exploring the impact of extracurricular activities, sports activities, and gambling on college students’ well-being, fitness, and mental health. Mark’s articles are informative, fact-based, and fun to read.