Help Is Still Available For Nevadans With Compulsive Gambling Issues Despite Coronavirus Pandemic

Written By Derek Helling on April 10, 2020
gambling Nevada Las Vegas problem

For people with compulsive gambling issues, the current circumstances can be especially treacherous. That’s why Nevada problem gambling resources adapted to the coronavirus pandemic.

Facing the loss of income and being sequestered creates a situation in which such individuals may feel especially vulnerable. The National Council on Problem Gambling, the NV Council on Problem Gambling and the NV Department of Health and Human Services all still offer resources remotely.


Nevada problem gambling resources available online and over the phone

You don’t have to heighten your risk of contracting or spreading the virus in order to access resources for compulsive gamblers and their families. Such resources are available remotely and many of them are free or of little cost.

You can access resources over the phone by calling 1-800-BETSOFF or 800-522-4700. You can also text the latter number.

Signs of a gambling problem include but are not limited to:

  • Borrowing money to gamble
  • Feelings of hopelessness, depression or suicide
  • Lying about gambling activities
  • Neglecting family, school and/or work to gamble
  • Using gambling to cope with loss and/or stress

If you’re uncertain about whether gambling is a compulsive issue for you, the best thing to do is reach out to existing services and have a counselor ascertain your individual situation. The problem is tough to tackle alone.

There are several support forums available over the Internet. The foremost of those is GamTalk, a moderated support forum open to both individuals with compulsive gambling issues and their family members/friends.

Gamblers Anonymous is a support group for individuals with compulsive gambling issues while Gam-Anon is the same for family members and friends. Both have moved weekly meetings to teleconference formats during this time.

In addition, NV offers a referral service for one-on-one counseling. The state will subsidize the cost of such treatment if you have lost your insurance or your insurance will not cover the cost of such treatment.


Details on individual counseling sessions for people with compulsive gambling issues

Many of those professionals offering counseling sessions have shifted their products to remote formats to curtail the spread of the virus. That’s to not only protect clients but for themselves and their staff as well.

The NV DHHS recommends seven licensed professional treatment centers throughout the state. Those are located in cities like Fallon, Henderson, Las Vegas and Reno.

That may not be a comprehensive list either. There might be some services more local to your location that the NCPG can help you find when you call.

With current technology, however, your location isn’t crucial. What is crucial, however, is reaching out if this is an issue you face.

NV has one of the highest rates of adult problem gambling in the US at six percent. The state estimates that as much as 20% of those people contemplate suicide as well.

Isolation can exacerbate those issues so while the pandemic is ongoing, it’s crucial for people in NV with such issues to avail themselves of these remote services. This is part of the reason why NV taxes gambling revenue, so there’s no good reason not to take advantage of the offerings.

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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a lead writer for PlayUSA and the manager of BetHer. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law.

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