Welcome to our digital detoxing series! A series on how to stop addictions toFortnite,Facebook,Instagram,porn,Netflix, Youtube,Tinder… Findall the posts about digital addiction. Today, let’s talk about how to quit the online poker addiction.
- What’s the online poker addiction?
- Addiction to online poker, a “real” addiction?
- What’s considered online poker addiction
- How much online poker is too much?
- Some gambling addiction facts & statistics
- Symptoms & Causes of the online poker addiction
- Why is online poker so addictive?
- Possible causes of online poker dependency
- Symptoms, Causes and Signs of online poker addiction
- Problems, impacts & bad effects of online poker
- Some benefits of online poker
- health problems
- impact on brain & mental health
- impact on relationships
- How to stop & quit your online poker addiction
- Main steps and solutions to break the online poker addiction
- Best online poker blocker apps & functionalities
- where to seek extra help?
- To Go Further
- How to help someone with online poker addiction
- Best books about gambling addiction
- Research about gambling addiction
What is the online poker addiction?
About online poker
Online poker is a digital form of the traditional card game, played over the internet. Players can compete against each other in real time, with the winner taking the pot.
Addiction to online poker, a “real” addiction?
Officially an addiction?
First, let’s have a look to the DSM-5,the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Does it includes online poker addiction?
No, online poker addiction is not listed in the DSM-5. There is a disorder related to problem gambling, called “Gambling Disorder,” which is listed in the DSM-5, but it does not specifically mention online poker.
So what means “online poker addiction”?
Online poker addiction is a serious problem that can have a major impact on a person’s life. It is characterized by an excessive preoccupation with playing online poker, to the point where it starts to interfere with daily activities, relationships, and finances. People who are addicted to online poker are likely to be in denial, and they may go to great lengths to hide their problem from family and friends. Symptoms can include spending large amounts of money, ignoring obligations, and neglecting relationships. Treatment options include cognitive-behavioral therapy, mutual-support groups, and lifestyle changes.
What is considered online poker addiction?
- 1. Spending too much time playing online poker.
- 2. Becoming preoccupied with online poker.
- 3. Making frequent and unsuccessful attempts to quit or reduce playing.
- 4. Making risky financial decisions related to online poker.
- 5. Feeling irritable or anxious when unable to play.
- 6. Neglecting work, school, or other important activities due to time spent playing.
- 7. Lying to family and friends about poker activities or losses.
- 8. Using online poker as a form of escape.
- 9. Losing interest in previously enjoyable activities.
- 10. Borrowing money to gamble or cover losses.
How much online poker is too much?
It is impossible to answer this question definitively, as the amount of time that is considered “too much” will depend on many factors, including the individual’s unique lifestyle and personal goals. Generally speaking, it is recommended that individuals limit their online poker time to an amount that does not interfere with their daily responsibilities and activities.
Some gambling addiction facts & statistics
According to the National Council on Problem Gambling, the following statistics are related to gambling addiction:
- 1. Approximately 2-3% of the general populationare problem gamblers.
- 2. An estimated 4-6% of college students and 1% of high school studentshave a gambling addiction.
- 3. Men are more likely than womento develop a gambling problem.
- 4. The age groups most likely to develop a gambling addiction are young adults and the elderly.
- 5. People with low income and education levelsare more likely to develop a gambling addiction.
- 6. The highest rates of gambling addictionare found among people who play electronic gaming machines(such as slot machines) and online gambling.
Is the online poker addiction widespread?
It is difficult to determine the exact number of people addicted to online poker, but studies have shown that gambling addiction is a growing problem worldwide. Online poker, like any other form of gambling, can be addictive and can lead to financial and social problems for individuals who develop a dependency on it. It is important for individuals to gamble responsibly and seek help if they feel they may have a problem with gambling.
Symptoms, Causes and Signs of online poker addiction
Why is online poker so addictive?
Online poker can be addictive because it allows players to play the game from the comfort of their own homes, at any time of day or night.
Additionally, the competitive nature of the game, coupled with the potential to win real money, can be very tempting for players. Finally, the immediacy of the game and the ability to play multiple tables at once can be very attractive for players looking for a quick and easy way to pass the time.
Possible causes of online poker dependency
- 1. Easy Accessibility: One of the main causes of online poker addiction is its easy accessibility. Online poker sites are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection. This makes it easy for poker players to play more often than they would like or should.
- 2. Chasing Losses: Gambler’s fallacy is when a player believes that if they keep playing, their luck will eventually turn around and they will start to win. This can lead to players staying at the poker table for far too long, chasing losses and betting more money than they can afford to lose.
- 3. Social Media: Social media can also play a role in online poker addiction. Sites such as Twitch allow players to stream their playing sessions for others to watch and comment, which can encourage players to keep playing for longer periods of time.
- 4. Financial Incentives: Many online poker sites offer financial incentives, such as bonuses and promotions, to encourage players to keep playing. These bonuses can be very tempting and lead to players gambling away more money than they can afford.
- 5. Escapism: For some, online poker can be an escape from reality. It can provide a distraction from the stress of daily life and offer an outlet for emotions such as boredom and frustration. Unfortunately, this can lead to addiction if it is not kept in check.
Signs & Symptoms of online poker addiction
Now let’s see if you have the online poker addiction problem.
- 1. You think about playing online poker during times when you should be focusing on other tasks.
- 2. You have a hard time sleeping because you’re thinking about poker hands you could have played differently.
- 3. You’ve started neglecting your health and hygiene because of your obsession with online poker.
- 4. You’ve tried setting limits on how much time and money you spend on online poker, but you can’t seem to keep them.
- 5. You often find yourself playing online poker even when you don’t have money to bet with.
- 6. You’re constantly checking your bank balance to make sure you have enough money to play poker.
- 7. You find yourself lying to family and friends about how much time and money you’re spending on online poker.
Problems, impacts & bad effects of online poker: should you quit?
What are some benefits of online poker
- 1. Convenience: Online poker allows you to play from the comfort of your own home or anywhere you have an internet connection. You can play when you want and as often as you want.
- 2. Variety: There are many different types of online poker games to choose from, including Texas Hold’em, Omaha, Seven-Card Stud, and more.
- 3. Bonuses: Many online poker sites offer bonuses to new players, such as free money to play with or other rewards.
- 4. Lower stakes: Online poker has lower stakes than traditional poker, so you can start playing without risking too much of your own money.
- 5. Faster play: Online poker games tend to move faster than in-person games as you don’t have to wait for other players to make their moves.
Why is Online Poker so Great?
- 1. It’s fun: Playing online poker can be an enjoyable and exciting experience.
- 2. It’s a great way to practice: Online poker allows you to practice and improve your game without the pressure of a live game.
- 3. You can make money: The potential to win real money makes online poker a great way to make some extra cash.
- 4. You can play from anywhere: As long as you have an internet connection, you can play online poker from almost anywhere in the world.
- 5. There are lots of tournaments available: Many online poker sites offer daily, weekly, and monthly tournaments with big prize pools.
But at the opposite, what can be some online poker addiction problems addicts suffer from?
general health problems
- 1. Increased Risk of Addiction: Playing online poker can lead to an increased risk of developing an addiction. Online poker is a form of gambling and can be highly addictive, which can lead to negative physical and mental health consequences.
- 2. Poor Sleep Quality: Prolonged online poker playing can lead to poor sleep quality as the player may stay up late playing online poker. Poor sleep quality can lead to a variety of physical and mental health issues.
- 3. Stress and Anxiety: Online poker can be a very stressful game and can cause stress and anxiety. This can lead to physical manifestations such as headaches, muscle tension, and digestive issues. It can also lead to mental health issues such as depression, irritability, and mood swings.
- 4. Reduced Activity Levels: Prolonged online poker playing can lead to reduced physical activity levels. This can have a negative impact on overall physical health, leading to obesity and other health problems.
- 5. Social Isolation: Online poker can lead to social isolation as the player spends more time playing online than with others. This can lead to loneliness, which can have a negative impact on mental health.
online poker and sleep disorder
Yes, playing online poker or any other online game for an extended period can disrupt your sleep patterns and cause sleep problems. Several factors can contribute to this, including the blue light emitted by the computer screen, the excitement and adrenaline rush of the game, and the time of day or night you are playing.
The blue light emitted by the computer screen can disrupt your circadian rhythm, the internal biological clock that controls your sleep-wake cycle. Exposure to blue light in the evening can suppress the production of melatonin, a hormone that promotes sleep, and make it harder to fall asleep.
The excitement and adrenaline rush of playing online poker can also make it difficult to relax and wind down at the end of the day. This can lead to racing thoughts and insomnia, making it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Finally, if you play online poker late at night or into the early morning hours, it can disrupt your sleep schedule and make it harder to get up in the morning. This can lead to a cycle of sleep deprivation and daytime fatigue, which can impact your overall health and well-being in the long run.
online poker affecting your brain & mental health: bad for brain and mental health?
Some effects of online poker on your brain
- 1. Increased Stress: Playing online poker can increase stress levels due to the pressure of the game, the need to make quick decisions and the unpredictability of the outcome.
- 2. Poor Concentration: Staring at a computer screen for extended periods of time can lead to poor concentration and impaired decision-making.
- 3. Loss of Self-Control: Online poker can lead to addictive behaviors due to the adrenaline rush of winning and the ease of access to poker sites. This can lead to players gambling more than they can afford and taking excessive risks.
- 4. Sleep Deprivation: Playing online poker can lead to sleep deprivation due to the long hours spent playing and the difficulty in disconnecting from the game.
- 5. Increased Risk of Depression: Prolonged exposure to the highs and lows of online poker can lead to emotional distress and depression. This can be exacerbated by the feeling of isolation that can come with playing online.
Some effects of online poker on your mental health
- 1. Addiction: Online poker can be very addictive, as it is easy to access, and the rewards can be very high. This can lead to players becoming overly focused on winning, and neglecting other aspects of their lives. This can lead to increased stress, depression, and even an inability to engage in normal daily activities.
- 2. Anxiety: If a player loses too much money, or spends more time playing poker than they should, anxiety can start to set in. The fear of losing more money, or the feeling of being unable to control their actions can be overwhelming.
- 3. Social Isolation: Spending too much time playing online poker can lead to social isolation, as players become so focused on the game that they neglect their relationships with family and friends. This can lead to feelings of loneliness, depression, and a lack of connection with the world.
- 4. Loss of Self-Control: Online poker can be very tempting, as players can easily access the game from anywhere. This can lead to players losing track of time, spending too much money, or making bad decisions. This can lead to feelings of guilt or regret, and an inability to control one’s behavior.
Does online poker cause stress and anxiety?
Yes, online poker can cause stress or anxiety for some people. The pressure of making quick decisions, the possibility of losing money, and the competitive nature of the game can all contribute to feelings of stress or anxiety.
Additionally, the isolation of playing online without the social interaction of a live game can also be a factor. It is important for individuals to recognize their own limits and take breaks if they are feeling overwhelmed or anxious while playing online poker.
Can online poker addiction lead to sadness and depression?
Yes, online poker addiction can lead to sadness and depression. When a person becomes addicted to online poker, they may spend excessive amounts of time and money on the game, neglecting other important areas of their life such as work, relationships, and self-care. This can lead to feelings of guilt, shame, and anxiety.
Additionally, when a person loses money while playing online poker, they may experience financial stress and worry, which can contribute to depression. The isolation and lack of social interaction that comes with online poker can also lead to feelings of loneliness and sadness. Overall, online poker addiction can have a negative impact on mental health and well-being.
Dopamine and online poker
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that plays a key role in the brain’s reward and pleasure systems. When we experience something pleasurable or rewarding, such as winning a game of online poker, dopamine is released in the brain, reinforcing the behavior and encouraging us to repeat it. This is why winning at online poker can be so addictive.
In fact, studies have shown that online poker players experience a surge in dopamine levels when they win, which can lead to a cycle of compulsive behavior and addiction. This is particularly true when players experience near-wins, which can trigger even stronger dopamine responses and encourage continued play.
However, dopamine is not the only factor at play in online poker addiction. Other factors, such as social isolation, financial stress, and underlying mental health issues, can also contribute to the development of addictive behaviors. It is important for individuals who are struggling with online poker addiction to seek professional help and support.
online poker effects on Focus, productivity, attention span, academic performance…
Online poker can have both positive and negative effects on focus, productivity, attention span, and academic performance.
– Playing online poker can improve concentration and focus as it requires constant attention to the game.
– It can also improve decision-making skills and quick thinking.
– Online poker can be a stress-reliever and can help players relax and unwind, which can improve productivity in other areas of their life.
– Online poker can be addictive and can lead to a decrease in productivity as players may spend excessive amounts of time playing instead of focusing on work or other important tasks.
– It can also negatively impact attention span as players may become easily distracted when not playing.
– Academic performance can be affected if students spend too much time playing poker instead of studying or completing assignments.
Overall, the effects of online poker on focus, productivity, attention span, and academic performance depend on the individual and their ability to balance playing with other important responsibilities.
A word about ADHD and online poker
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as people with ADHD may interact differently with online poker depending on the severity of their symptoms, the type of online poker game being played, and a range of other individual factors.
That said, some people with ADHD may find online poker to be an engaging and rewarding activity that allows them to focus on a specific task and provides a sense of excitement and challenge. Others may struggle to maintain focus and attention during long periods of gameplay, which could negatively impact their performance and enjoyment of the game.
Overall, it is important for individuals with ADHD to approach online poker with caution and to be aware of their own strengths and limitations. They may benefit from setting clear goals and time limits for their gameplay, taking frequent breaks to recharge their mental energy, and seeking support from friends, family, or mental health professionals if needed.
affecting your relationships
online poker and self-esteem
Online poker can have both positive and negative effects on self-esteem.
- 1. Success in winning: Winning at online poker can boost one’s self-esteem and confidence. It can create a feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction.
- 2. Skill development: Developing skills in online poker can increase self-esteem. As the player gets better, they feel more confident in their abilities.
- 3. Social connections: Online poker can provide a sense of community and social connection, which can boost self-esteem.
- 1. Losing streaks: Losing at online poker can lower self-esteem and confidence. It can create feelings of frustration, disappointment, and even shame.
- 2. Comparison with others: Online poker can lead to comparing oneself to others, especially if one is playing against more skilled players. This can lower self-esteem and create a sense of inadequacy.
- 3. Addiction: If one becomes addicted to online poker, it can lead to negative effects on self-esteem. The individual may feel a lack of control over their behavior, leading to feelings of guilt and shame.
Overall, online poker can have a significant impact on self-esteem, and it is essential to monitor one’s thoughts and emotions while engaging in this activity.
online poker addiction leads to isolation and loneliness?
Yes, online poker addiction can lead to isolation and loneliness. When someone becomes addicted to playing online poker, they may spend extended periods of time alone in front of a computer screen, neglecting social interactions and relationships. This can lead to feelings of loneliness and isolation, as well as a lack of emotional support and social connections.
Additionally, the financial strain of online poker addiction can cause further isolation and difficulty in maintaining relationships. It is important for individuals who are struggling with online poker addiction to seek help and support in order to address their addiction and improve their overall well-being.
Effects of online poker on your relationship
- 1. Shared hobby: Online poker can be a shared hobby for couples, which can strengthen their bond and give them something to do together.
- 2. Financial gain: Online poker can be a source of income for couples, which can improve their financial situation and reduce stress.
- 3. Improved communication: Playing online poker requires communication and strategy, which can improve communication skills and teamwork in a relationship.
- 1. Addiction: Online poker can be addictive, and excessive gambling can strain a relationship and lead to financial problems.
- 2. Time management issues: Online poker can take up a lot of time, and if one partner spends too much time playing, it can lead to neglect of the relationship and other responsibilities.
- 3. Trust issues: If one partner is secretive about their online poker activities or hides their gambling losses, it can lead to trust issues and strain the relationship.
How To Stop & quit Your online poker Addiction
Finally you think you are addicted to online poker and you are wondering how to quit it? How to break and overcome your cravings for online poker?
Here are the best solutions, steps, supports, resources and help you can get to treat your online poker addiction.
Main steps and solutions to break the online poker addiction
- 1. Recognize the Problem: The first step in overcoming an online poker addiction is to recognize the problem and admit that you have a problem.
- 2.Set Goals: Make a plan to reduce the time spent playing online poker and set a time limit per session.
- 3.Create a Support Network: Reach out to family, friends and others who can provide emotional support and help when needed.
- 4.Find Meaningful Activities: Find activities that can fill the time previously spent playing poker, such as exercising, going out with friends, or learning a new skill.
- 5.Manage Your Funds: Set a budget for poker and gambling activities, and stick to it.
- 6.Seek Professional Help: Consider seeking professional help from a counselor or therapist if necessary.
Actually, that’s what most documentation out there is about… However, quitting a digital addiction can be a bit trickier than that.
So our team, after testing many ways, designed a bulletproof way to overcome them. Here are some clear and practical steps that are very powerful to quit a digital addiction, including online poker:
1. Purge temptations: Get rid of online poker
First, cleaning your life from temptations is much easier than resisting to them. Disable or delete your online poker accounts, change the password and hide it somewhere you can’t access easily, keep your phone / computer far away… Out of sight out of mind.
Here is a video from our course the The Digital Purge. on how to add resistance to your temptations, so you become so lazy to engage with them that you give them up: