Signs of a Sports Betting Problem

Jun 21, 2023

Sports betting can be an exciting and entertaining activity for many people, but for some, it can lead to addiction. Problem gambling can lead to negative consequences on someone's mental health, financial stability, and social life. While some individuals may have a difficult time gauging their own behavior, there are common signs that could indicate that someone is struggling with a sports betting addiction.

What is sports betting?

Sports betting is a type of gambling where individuals place bets on the outcome of a sporting event. The concept has been around for centuries, with the ancient Greeks and Romans known for placing bets on gladiatorial fights and chariot races.

Today, sports betting has evolved to cover a wide range of sports including football, basketball, baseball, cricket, tennis and horse racing. If there’s a sporting match being played, somebody may be betting on it. With the rise of online betting platforms, sports betting has become even more accessible to individuals across the world. These platforms also make it easier than ever to start placing bets and opening up the door for a potential gambling problem.

Sports betting statistics

Sports betting has become a popular part of modern culture, with more individuals than ever before placing wagers on sports events. In 2022 American sports betting revenue was $7.5 billion dollars and is expected to reach over $10 billion in 2028. And this only accounts for legal gambling. Sports gambling can also take place with friends or bookies, these numbers are harder to track. However, it is safe to say that more and more people are gambling on sports. 

In the United States, the legal landscape of sports betting has been changing rapidly in recent years. In 2018, the Supreme Court ruled that a federal ban on sports betting was unconstitutional, paving the way for individual states to legalize and regulate the practice. More than half the states in the country have legalized sports betting or are in the process of doing so. 

Today, there are more than 20 sports betting sites and apps that are available in the United States. With these numbers increasing it’s no wonder that sports betting and problem gambling is on the rise. 

Signs and symptoms of sports betting addiction

If you suspect a friend or loved one has a sports gambling problem there are some signs to look out for. 

Common signs of sports betting addiction to be aware of:

  • Increased frequency and amount of bets: If an individual begins to bet on sports more frequently and starts to increase the amount of money they are betting, this could be a sign of addiction.

  • Borrowing money: Often an individual with a gambling problem will begin to borrow money to fund their activities. 

  • Inability to stop or cut back: If an individual has tried to stop or cut back on their sports betting but finds themselves unable to do so, this could be a sign of addiction.

  • Neglecting other responsibilities: An individual who is addicted to sports betting may neglect other responsibilities such as work, school, or family obligations in order to place bets.

  • Use of credit cards: An individual who is addicted to sports betting may use credit cards to finance their bets, leading to financial problems.

  • Loss of interest in other activities: An individual who is addicted to sports betting may lose interest in other activities they once enjoyed, instead choosing to spend all their time and money on placing bets.

  • Tendency to chase losses: An individual who is addicted to sports betting may continue to place bets in order to try to recoup losses from previous bets.

  • Hiding or lying about betting activity: An individual who is addicted to sports betting may feel the need to hide or lie about their betting activity from others, feeling ashamed or embarrassed by their behavior.

If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms, it may be time to seek professional help. There are resources available, such as Gamblers Anonymous and treatment programs specializing in sports betting help, that can provide support and guidance for individuals struggling with sports betting addiction. Remember, recognizing and addressing the issue early on can prevent it from escalating and causing further harm.

Dangers of sports betting

Sports betting, like any other form of gambling, can be dangerous and addictive. While it can be a form of entertainment for some, it can quickly spiral out of control for others. Here are some of the dangers of sports betting:

  • Addiction: Sports betting can lead to addiction, just like other forms of gambling. When an individual becomes addicted to sports betting, it can have a negative impact on their mental and physical health, as well as their relationships and finances.

  • Financial problems: An individual who is addicted to sports betting may start to spend increasingly large amounts of money on their bets, leading to financial problems. This can lead to debt, bankruptcy, and other financial difficulties.

  • Mental health issues: Addiction to sports betting can also lead to mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and stress. The constant worry and obsession over winning bets can take a toll on an individual's mental health.

  • Loss of control: When an individual becomes addicted to sports betting, they can lose control over their behavior. They may find themselves placing bets even when they cannot afford it, neglecting other responsibilities, and taking risks that they would not normally take.

  • Illegal activities: Addiction to sports betting can also lead to illegal activities such as fraud and embezzlement. Some individuals may resort to stealing money or engaging in other criminal activities in order to finance their betting habits.

Financial Problems May Occur:

Individuals who are participating in sports betting need to be aware of financial issues. Sports betting can be addictive, and many individuals struggle with the compulsion to keep betting, even when they can no longer afford to do so (leading to negative effects on their relationships and life). Addiction to sports betting can lead to significant financial problems, including debt, bankruptcy, and loss of assets such as homes and cars. According to the National Council on Problem Gambling, millions of Americans meet the criteria for gambling addiction with online sports betting being one of the most widespread gambling activities.

Be Aware of Potential Legal Issues:

If an individual is actively sports betting beyond their financial means, they need to be aware of what legal issues can arise. In certain US states, sports betting is illegal or heavily regulated. Individuals who engage in online sports betting may face legal consequences such as fines or jail time. The American Gaming Association (AGA) confirms this risk, noting that Americans illegally gamble more than half a trillion dollars every year. Illegal sports betting can also lead to theft and other criminal activities, as individuals resort to violence to get money to sports bet online with or collect debts. Additionally, unregulated sports betting can be a breeding ground for fraud and scams. Individuals with sports betting problems may be cheated out of their money or have their personal information stolen.

Potential Psychological Problems Can Emerge:

Sports betting (particularly online sports betting that anonymizes the individual placing the wager) can also lead to behavioral health issues including obsession and risk-taking behaviors. Individuals who become obsessed with sports betting may spend an excessive amount of time and money on it, neglecting other areas of their life such as work, family, and social relationships. Risk-taking behaviors associated with sports betting can also lead to poor financial and emotional decision-making, which can have negative consequences in other areas of life.

How to get help for sports betting addiction

Sports betting addiction is a serious issue that can lead to significant problems for individuals, such as financial difficulties, mental health issues, and even illegal activities. If you or someone you know is struggling with a sports betting addiction, it's important to seek help.

The first step in getting help is to acknowledge that there is a problem. It's common for individuals to deny that they have an addiction, but accepting the reality of the situation is the first step towards recovery.

Professional treatment is available for those who need support in stopping sports betting. Counseling and therapy can help individuals identify the root causes of their addiction and develop strategies to overcome it. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a common approach used in treating gambling addiction, as it focuses on changing thought patterns and behaviors.


Signs of Gambling Addiction in a Spouse

Nov 30, 2023


​​Signs of Sex Addiction

Nov 27, 2023


Gambling and Divorce: Statistics and Information

Nov 26, 2023


What is DFS Gambling?

Nov 19, 2023


Addiction Specialist: Helping You Overcome Addiction

Nov 18, 2023


Exploring the Different Types of Gambling

Nov 8, 2023


Technology Addiction: Signs and Treatment

Oct 30, 2023


Is Sex Addiction Real? 

Oct 25, 2023


Is Options Trading Gambling?

Oct 23, 2023


Gambling Addiction and Treatment

Oct 16, 2023


Sex Addiction Treatment and Therapy Options

Oct 14, 2023


Signs of Gambling Addiction

Oct 7, 2023


Is the Stock Market Gambling?

Sep 25, 2023


Tips for Finding a Gambling Rehab Center

Sep 24, 2023


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Pathological Gambling

Sep 23, 2023


What Causes Porn Addiction?

Sep 18, 2023


Video Game Addiction

Sep 16, 2023


Porn Addiction Signs & Symptoms

Sep 11, 2023


Gambling Addiction Withdrawal Symptoms & Signs

Aug 29, 2023


How to Stop Online Gambling

Aug 27, 2023


Does Medicare Cover Gambling Rehab?

Aug 19, 2023


Gambling and Dopamine

Aug 12, 2023


How to Stop a Porn Addiction: Tips & Treatment

Aug 11, 2023


Porn Addiction Counseling

Aug 7, 2023


Is Fantasy Football Gambling?

Jul 24, 2023


Signs of a Day Trading Problem

Jul 19, 2023


Why is Gambling Addictive?

Jul 18, 2023


The Arizona Lottery and Gambling

Jul 16, 2023


Is Poker Gambling?

Jul 15, 2023


Is Crypto Gambling?

Jul 14, 2023


Gambling and Sports Betting Among College Students

Jul 8, 2023


Updates made to gambling disorder across the DSM-III, DSM-IV, DSM-5

Updates Made to Gambling Disorder Clinical Criteria Between DSM-III, DSM-IV, and DSM-5

Jul 8, 2023

Cara Anderson

Combatting Gambling and Alcohol Addiction

Jun 30, 2023


Medication for Gambling Addiction

Jun 27, 2023


The Seven Types of Gamblers: Are You One of Them?

Jun 25, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

10 Questions to Ask If You Think Your Loved One Has a Gambling Problem

Jun 24, 2023

Cara Anderson

Signs of a Sports Betting Problem

Jun 21, 2023


Las Vegas - often called the gambling capital of the world

Exploring the History of Gambling in the US

Jun 17, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Gambling Treatment in Arizona

Jun 15, 2023


Voluntary Self Exclusion to Stop Online Gambling

Jun 15, 2023

Cara Anderson

Does Blue Cross Blue Shield Cover Gambling Treatment?

Jun 13, 2023


The Growing Issue of Loot Box Addiction: What Parents Need to Know

Jun 11, 2023

Cara Anderson

Gambling Addiction Hotline

Jun 5, 2023


How to Stop Gambling

Jun 1, 2023


Can Gambling Addiction Be Cured?

May 31, 2023


problem gambler worried about addiction

Why Is Gambling So Addictive?

May 30, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Medication that can cause gambling

Abilify and Compulsive Gambling

May 26, 2023

Cara Anderson

A man who has regained control of his life by stopping gambling and online sports betting

How to Stop Gambling: Strategies for Regaining Control

May 21, 2023

Cara Anderson

This man stopped gambling by recognizing his online sports betting problem

How to Stop Gambling and Save Money

May 18, 2023

Cara Anderson

People celebrating being free of a gambling addiction

How to Help Someone with a Gambling Addiction

May 16, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

What is a Microbet and how does it contribute to online sports betting addiction

Microbets and Online Gambling Addiction

May 13, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

The Growing Phenomenon of Cryptocurrency Addiction: What Traders Need to Know About Crypto Addiction

Cryptocurrency Addiction

May 9, 2023

Tobias Jackson

Esports player competing in an esports match and having fans gamble on their play

The Rise of Esports Gambling

May 6, 2023

Cara Anderson

The stock market graph of a day trader who has a day trading addiction

How Day Trading Can Create a Dangerous Addiction

May 4, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Younger individuals gathered around a computer talking about a gambling addiction meme

How Addictive Memes Have Fueled Problem Gamblers

May 2, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Man in the middle of taking a Do I have a Gambling Problem Quiz

Clinical Screening Tools and Quizzes to Answer the Question: "Do I have a Gambling Problem?"

May 1, 2023

Tobias Jackson

This man has a Sports Betting Problem and is sitting in front of a tv watching his online sports bets lose.

Sports Betting Problems and What to Be Aware Of

Apr 30, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Insurance paperwork that Birches clients do not need to go through as Birches Health handles all administrative and payment matters for them!

Insurance Coverage for Gambling Addiction in 2023

Apr 29, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Man reading outside as he has stopped online sports betting

How to Stop Sports Betting

Apr 28, 2023

Cara Anderson

Couple hugging as the man has a gambling addiction and the woman, his loved one, is able to support him through it.

Helping a Loved One with a Gambling Addiction

Apr 27, 2023

Cara Anderson

Man actualizing self care and manifesting his recovery journey from problem gambling and gambling addiction

Self Care for Problem Gamblers

Apr 26, 2023

Cara Anderson

NCAA student athletes in college at university gathering to celebrate a great practice

Can NCAA Athletes Bet on Sports?

Apr 25, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Bad effects of glamorization of gambling in the media in films, tv shows, and podcasts

Glamorized Gambling and What To Be Aware Of

Apr 24, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

College students (youths and young adults) all gathered around a tv watching the athletic contest during March Madness

What is March Madness and Should You Be Worried?

Apr 22, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Basketball arena where spectators are gathering to watch a National Basketball Assocation (NBA) game and may be betting on sports and wagering on events and the outcome of the game

What is Sports Betting and Event Wagering?

Apr 21, 2023

Elliott Rapaport

Therapist offering a problem gambler gambling addiction counseling and treatment

What is Problem Gambling?

Apr 20, 2023

Elliott Rapaport