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Lottery Hotline: 01628 201 284

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How to identify if gambling is becoming a problem

The majority of people do gamble responsibly. It may help you to keep your gambling under control by remembering the following:

  • You're taking part for fun - not as a means of investing your money
  • Before playing, set strict limits on how much time and money you're going to spend
  • Quit while you're ahead
  • Only gamble with money you can afford to lose
  • Don't spend more money on gambling, hoping to win back money that you've lost
  • Keep up other interests and hobbies - don't let gambling take over your life
  • Don't gamble in order to escape from stress or boredom
  • Gambling in moderation is okay

For some however gambling can become a problem. If you are concerned about the amount you are gambling, and feel it is taking over your life - or you are concerned for a friend or relative - then the following questions may help you by giving you some guidance.

Have others ever criticised your gambling?

  • Have you lied to cover up the amount you have gambled or the time you have spent doing it?
  • Do arguments, frustrations or disappointments make you want to gamble.
  • Do you gamble alone for long periods?
  • Do you stay away from work or college to gamble?
  • Do you gamble to escape from a boring or unhappy life?
  • Are you reluctant to spend 'gambling money' on anything else?
  • Have you lost interest in your family, friends or pastimes due to gambling?
  • After losing, do you feel you must try to win back your losses as soon as possible?
  • When gambling and you run out of money, do you feel lost and in despair, and need to gamble again as soon as possible?
  • Do you gamble until your last penny is gone?
  • Have you lied, stolen or borrowed just to get money to gamble or to pay gambling debts?
  • Do you feel depressed or even suicidal because of your gambling?

If you are answering 'yes' to some of these questions, then it is likely that a gambling problem exists. For friendly and helpful advice from trained counsellors call the National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133. The helpline operates between 8am and midnight, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Calls outside of these hours will be taken by a message taking service.

Sometimes just telling someone about your problem can be a relief and it is the first step towards dealing with your problem. You can also visit the GambleAware website www.begambleaware.co.uk for more information and advice.

Self-Exclusion

  • Customers can request self-exclusion from The Heart Research Institute (UK) Lotteries if they have a gambling problem. Their details will be held on a log within 48 hours of receiving a self-exclusion notice and they will be refused entry and excluded from all Lottery promotional marketing for a minimum period of 6 months and up to 5 years.

  • Customers can decide to enter into a self-exclusion agreement immediately or if they wish to consider the self-exclusion further, the customer may return at a later date to enter into self-exclusion.

  • The Heart Research Institute (UK) will not market the Lottery to anyone on their self-exclusion log for a period of 7 years after the end of the self-exclusion period unless the customer takes positive action to gamble again within this 7 year period.

  • If an individual wishes to extend their self-exclusion period, they may do so by contacting The Heart Research Institute (UK) direct.  

  • Where a customer makes a positive request to begin gambling again during the 7 year period following the end of their initial self-exclusion, the customer will be given a 24 hour cooling off period before any promotion of the lottery or entry into the lottery is made accessible to them.  Contact must be made via phone or in person

  • Supporters can ask to be excluded by contacting the helpline number 01628 201284 or complete our online self-exclusion form.