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Responsible gambling in Ohio

Gambling can be a fun, harmless activity, but responsible gambling is extremely important. On this page, we provide a detailed look at problem gaming, responsible gambling best practices, and resources for people that have gambling problems in Ohio.

Fact checked by: Gary Garry
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A number of different types of gambling have been available in Ohio for years, so there has always been a focus on responsible gambling.

In-person and online sports betting in Ohio was launched in the state in January 2023 to expand the options, and it has become quite popular.

Problem gambling resources in Ohio

Under Ohio gaming laws, 2% of gross casino and sports betting revenue is used to support programs that help people deal with gambling problems.

Let’s take a look at the tools and resources that are available to Buckeye State residents.

Ohio Casino Control Commission

The Ohio Casino Control Commission oversees casino gaming and sports betting, including daily fantasy sports.

They have links to responsible gambling information and resources on their site. In fact, they point visitors toward problem gambling resources that are specific to each major metropolitan area in the state.

Ohio Lottery Play Responsibly page

When it comes to lottery games, the Ohio Lottery Commission is the agency that supervises lottery activities.

If you visit their Play Responsibly page, you will find links to treatment programs, problem gambling facts, and other important sources of assistance and information.

There is also a link to a problem gambling live chat function, and there are links to resources like:

  • Keep It Fun Ohio: Keep It Fun Ohio is an interactive tool. There are videos, games, and valuable tips that can help you keep your gambling in perspective. They also provide a gambling expense calculator so you can realistically evaluate the potential impact of your wagers.
  • Time Out Ohio Voluntary Exclusion Program: If you want to take an extended hiatus from gambling, you can consider the Time Out Ohio Program. When you register for the self-exclusion list for Ohio gamblers, you are excluded from gambling at casinos, racinos, and sportsbooks in the state for one year, five years, or the rest of your life.
  • Problem Gambling Network of Ohio:  According to its mission statement, the Problem Gambling Network of Ohio is dedicated to bolstering the Ohio problem gambling system in various ways. They have a training program that prepares people to treat gambling disorders.

Nationwide problem gambling resources

In addition to the state-level resources that are specific to Ohio, there are national problem gambling resources out there as well, and this is the rundown of the most notable ones:

National Council on Problem Gambling

This is an organization that takes a broad approach to problem gaming assistance.

The National Problem Gambling Helpline number is 1-800-GAMBLER, and they also have a gambling problem chat option that is up and running on a 24/7 basis, and it is available in all 50 states.

International Center for Responsible Gaming

This organization has been around since 1996, and they are dedicated to behavioral research and the development of treatment solutions.

They take an in-depth, science-based approach, and they are funded by commercial and tribal gaming concerns.

Gamblers Anonymous

Gamblers Anonymous is a 12-step program that is similar to Alcoholics Anonymous but focused on gambling addictions.

Individuals meet to share their stories and provide support for one another, and this approach has a strong success rate among those that are committed to change.


If you want to chat with someone online about your own gambling issues or someone else’s problem gambling, Gamtalk is a viable option.

You can join the ongoing conversations among users at any time, and the dialogue can be quite useful.


This is an organization that is dedicated to people that are impacted by the problem gambling of a family member or another person that they care about.

In addition to the assistance that they provide for these individuals, they make an effort to increase awareness about the impact of gaming addictions on others.

Responsible gambling overview

Responsible gambling is just a matter of common sense if you enter the activity in the right frame of mind.

When you gamble responsibly, you do not put yourself at risk financially, and you don’t allow yourself to become overly emotional about the outcome of your wagers.

Similarly, a responsible gambler will not take actions that negatively impact others.

Everyone has heard of responsible driving, and there is definitely a parallel there. Driving is usually a harmless endeavor that makes life better, but it can be dangerous if you act irresponsibly on the roadways.

Though the impact of irresponsibility is not as severe, in a broad sense, this also applies to gambling.

Responsible gambling tips

If you apply these actionable tips, you will be able to steer clear of problem gaming:

  1. From the outset, look at gambling as a form of entertainment rather than a moneymaking opportunity.
  2. Understand that otherwise responsible people fall into problem gaming patterns, so it can happen to anyone.
  3. Some people are prone to addictive behavior in a broad sense, and if you are one of them, exercise an added layer of caution.
  4. Set aside a dedicated gambling bankroll that you could afford to lose if it comes down to that.
  5. Resolve to refrain from gambling when you are drinking alcohol excessively.
  6. Set limits on how much time you will devote to gambling in a single session.
  7. Do not make emotional wagers if you get upset after a frustrating loss.
  8. Be willing to withdraw funds from your account when you win a significant amount to maintain the proper perspective.

Responsible practices for gambling operators

  • Provide contact information for problem gaming resources.
  • Make educational materials directly available to patrons.
  • Train staff members to fully understand responsible gambling practices.
  • Do not accept wagers from people that are intoxicated to the point of poor decision-making.
  • Marketing materials should be honest, forthcoming, and transparent.
  • Implement best practices to prevent underage gambling, and train employees accordingly.

How to identify problem gambling

It can be somewhat challenging to identify problem gambling because there is a very thin line that you have to define. Indeed, some actions and activities are enjoyable or even necessary, but if you overdo it, there are negative consequences.

From the outset, everyone knows that gambling is a risky endeavor, but that’s why it’s fun. You are taking a chance, and it is exciting to watch the drama unfold when you have a monetary stake in the outcome.

How do you tell the difference between acceptable gaming and problem gambling? These are some of the telltale signs that would be indicative of a problem or potential problem:

  • Prioritizing frequent gambling over most other activities
  • Significant mood swings that are tied to winning and losing
  • Financial problems that can be traced back to gambling
  • Taking cash advances from credit cards to gamble
  • Lose interest in sports without betting on the outcome
  • Borrowing money from family or friends for gambling purposes
  • Start taking bigger and bigger risks

Responsible gambling is imperative

Over recent years, online gambling has exploded in the United States. It started with the 2018 Supreme Court decision that struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). This opened the door to legal sports betting in the United States.

As we have stated, Ohio walked through that door, and legal sports betting began in the state in January 2023. Since 2018, a number of states have also legalized online casino gaming, and that number will grow as time goes on.

When gambling opportunities are readily accessible from your smartphone, you are navigating a slippery slope. Many people gamble for years with no problems whatsoever, but others fall over the edge.

When you gamble responsibly, you reap the rewards on an individual level. On top of that, you set a good example for your family members, friends, and coworkers. Gambling is here to stay and will become more common over the years, so responsible gaming is more important than ever.

Fact checked by: Gary Garry