Sports Betting Launches in North Carolina: How to Bet Responsibly

Mar 12, 2024

It’s the start of a new era in North Carolina, as online sports gambling has gone live in the Tar Heel State. North Carolina joins the ever-growing sports betting wave and becomes the 38th state to legalize sports betting in any form, and the 30th state in the country to legalize online/mobile sports betting. For the last year or so, sports gambling had only been legal in North Carolina at tribal casinos, but now it will be available both in-person and online. 

The legalization of online sports betting arrives for the residents of North Carolina with March Madness just days away. But before teams can start dancing, they have to go through their conference tournaments. North Carolina residents will be able to bet on any of the tournaments, including the Big South and Southern conference tournaments, which are being held in North Carolina.

Thousands of North Carolina residents are expected to sign up at one of the eight online sportsbooks that have been approved to operate in the state. With millions of college basketball fans throughout the state, plenty of money will be wagered in just the first few days. However, it’s important to learn how to gamble responsibly beforehand to avoid potentially falling into gambling addiction. Here are all the details you need to know about online sports betting launching today in North Carolina, plus some important tips on how to gamble responsibly.

How to bet responsibly in North Carolina 

How to bet on sports in NC

As of noon on Monday, March 11th, online sports betting is legal in North Carolina. There are only a few requirements to register for a new account at one of the legalized online sportsbooks. First, you must be at least 21 years old. Second, you must be located in the state of North Carolina when placing the bet. 

If you are at least 21 years old and located in North Carolina, the next step is to choose which sportsbook you want to sign up at. The eight online sportsbooks are FanDuel, DraftKings, BetMGM, Caesars, Bet365, ESPN Bet, Fanatics, and Underdog (per Carolina Journal). Each sportsbook has its own sign-up offer, so the decision is yours. 

Sports levels that you will be able to gamble on include professional, collegiate, and some amateur leagues, but of course not youth sports.

Learn the basics of Responsible Gaming

Online sports betting becoming legalized right before March Madness is good news for many sports bettors in North Carolina, but it also means that a lot of money is going to be gambled in just the first few weeks. In a survey done by BetCarolina, 1 in 6 residents expect to gamble once a week. North Carolina is home to several of the top college basketball programs in the country, like Duke and UNC, so plenty of those fans are expected to bet on their team in the ACC conference tournament and March Madness.

Before the tournaments begin, it’s critical to familiarize yourself with the techniques of responsible gambling. Here are several tips that you should know before you start betting, starting with only betting what you can afford to lose. That amount depends on the person, and it’s recommended to only gamble 1-4% of your “bankroll” - which can be thought of as your betting budget - on a single bet. 

Secondly, set limits on how often you gamble. This relates to the first tip since it minimizes the chance of losing more than planned. Limiting yourself can be on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Doing this lowers the chance of you gambling more money since the longer you are on a sportsbook app, the higher the chance you gamble more.

Next, never chase your losses. This is an easy way to lose more money than you would expect and to potentially develop a gambling disorder. This tip is especially important during March Madness, since there will be several games each day. If you lose your first bet of the day, do not gamble more just to try to break even. This could result in an even bigger loss on the day, as these losses can quickly compound.

Finally, it’s important to have a clear mind when gambling. This means you should never gamble under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Gambling under the influence can alter your decision-making skills and increase your chances of risking and losing more money. Gambling is already trying to predict the future, so don’t make it even harder on yourself with these types of substances.

Avoiding Gambling Addiction

Warning signs of Problem Gambling

A gambling addiction is a very serious problem that can lead to mental and financial problems. With that said, here are warning signs to look out for. Some of the signs can be noticed by friends or family members, like if the person in question is lying to cover up gambling losses, skipping social events to gamble, asking for money, or even stealing things to fund their habit.

Other warning signs include not being able to pay bills because of gambling losses, spending more time at the casino or gambling online, impacts on work, or getting fired from a job because of gambling. These are just some of the warning signs to look out for, but there are plenty more. A good rule of thumb is that if you suspect there may be an issue with yourself, a friend or a loved one, seek out resources that can help assess the potential issue and act as a guide toward care if needed.

Gambling Addiction help and resources

Help is available if you, a friend, or a family member may be suffering from a gambling addiction or a related behavioral problem. Birches Health helps combat gambling addiction with online counseling that is almost always covered at least in part by insurance. Along with a 24/7 care team and trained specialists with years of experience, Birches Health offers care options that fit your schedule and can be done from the comfort of your home. 

If you believe you or someone else could benefit from the Birches Health offerings, please call (833) 483-3838 or email hello@bircheshealth.com

Sources:

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