Gambling is risking something of value (e.g. money, time, possessions) in hopes of gaining something of greater value.

Gambling includes

  • Lotteries and instant lotteries
  • Sports and E-Sports betting
  • Horse/Dog Race betting
  • Poker and other card games
  • Casino games
  • Bingo
  • Electronic Gaming Machines (i.e. Slots, Tap Tics, VLTs)

If gambling has stopped being a source of fun and more a source of problems, ConnexOntario can help. 1-866-531-2600 or visit

Set money limits before you play
Don’t gamble with your finances. Decide on the amount that you can afford to lose before you start to play. Only spend the money that you have set aside for your entertainment budget, not money that you need for bills, rent, groceries, etc. Only take out your set amount and leave your ATM cards at home. If you spend that money, quit. Don’t chase your losses. Gambling activities are designed to take in more money than the players win. If you win, enjoy, but remember it is not the norm.

Don’t gamble when under the influence of drugs or alcohol or upset
Betting while under the influence of alcohol or other substances can lead to risky decision making and regret. It can also be hard to make good choices about betting when you are feeling low.

Balance gambling with other activities.
Balance gambling with other leisure activities, such as playing sports, hanging out with friends or traveling, so that gambling doesn’t become too consuming and interfere with other aspects of your life, such as your work or relationships. Before you play, set a time limit and choose to quit when the allotted time is over. Betting is a form of entertainment and a way to have fun; not a source of income.

If gambling has stopped being a source of fun and more a source of problems, ConnexOntario can help. 1-866-531-2600 or visit

Betting becomes a problem when it is done excessively and negatively impacts your relationships, finances, physical or mental health, school or work performances, and/or other areas of your life. This problem can affect anyone regardless of your age, gender, race, or social status.

Gambling can have harmful effects on
Finances: Gambling can cause a loss of money for food, rent, or other essentials. This loss of money can lead to loosing major personal belongings, such as a car, house, business, savings and retirement funds.

Relationships: Gambling can add additional stress on relationships between family, friends, or community. This stress can leads to loss of relationships, family role changing (children needed to take care of the parent), social isolation, or increased risk for family violence.

Stress: Gambling can cause emotional, or psychological and financial. This stress can be brought on by other harms (e.g. relationship problems, financial strain, thoughts of self harm, due to gambling. This stress can cause feelings of shame, self-doubt, hopelessness, fear, and suicidal ideation.

Culture/ Community: Gambling can create shame leading to secrecy and isolation. This in turn results in lost connections in a community or culture.

Work or School: Gambling can lead to a loss of a job, suspension, or expulsion related to poor performance , using too many sick days, hours missed, or frequent tardiness.

If gambling has stopped being a source of fun and more a source of problems, ConnexOntario can help. 1-866-531-2600 or visit

Problem Gambling

  • Gambling Quiz
  • Monitor Your Gambling Urges (MYGU) Mobile App
  • Community Forum
  • Self Help for those who gamble
  • Self-Help for family and Friends

YMCA Youth Gambling Awareness Program (YGAP)
The YGAP is a free, bilingual service funded by the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care offering educational prevention programs designed to raise youth awareness with regards to gambling, healthy and active living, and making informed decisions. YGAP workshops are developmentally appropriate and target youth based on age (8-10 years, 11-14 years, and 15-18 years) and the Ontario Ministry of Education curriculum requirements. YGAP has developed a series of curriculum-based workshops for elementary, middle and high schools. Some of the topics discussed in our gambling awareness workshops include probability and randomness, mental health and addictions, financial literacy, media literacy, online safety, and harm reduction strategies.

For more information: or call 519-256-7330 ext .238

Responsible Gambling Council (RGC)

PlaySmart Centre is the go-to place for facts, tools, and advice about gambling for all levels of players. The Centres can be found at gambling venues across Ontario. Some of the things the Centres offer: Learn how gambling works, take a break from gambling, test your knowledge using their interactive kiosk, and find ways to get help. PlaySmart Centre is managed by the Responsible Gambling Council, an independent non-profit organization dedicated to problem gambling prevention.

For more information: or call 519-977-0440 or toll-free 1-866-799-5292

Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare’s (HDGH) Centre for Problem Gambling and Digital Dependency (CPGDD)

The Centre for Problem Gambling and Digital Dependency provides free, confidential, and professional treatment services to individuals and their family and friends impacted by gambling, gaming, and/or problematic internet use related concerns. Their Canadian board certified counsellors and inter-disciplinary team understand Digital Dependencies and Problem Gambling and are equipped to meet your needs and recovery goals. Their outpatient and education services are available to residents of Windsor and Essex County, while their residential treatment services are available to all residents across Ontario. Their team of qualified professionals embraces a client-centered approach while providing education and harm reduction strategies to help attain a healthy balance and establish boundaries between reality and the cyber world. The Centre for Problem Gambling and Digital Dependency offers a full range of treatment options for those experiencing problems due to their own gambling and/or digital dependency. Services offered include individual counselling, group counselling, day treatment, residential treatment and aftercare services. At the Centre for Problem Gambling and Digital Dependency they understand how difficult it can be when someone you love gambles. Their services for family and friends are designed to offer support and education through individual and group counselling programs for those interested in developing a better understanding of gambling addiction or digital dependency.

For more information: or call (519) 254-2112

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