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Betting on the Wrong Horse: Racetrack Wagering Problems in New Jersey

NJ residents of Monmouth, Freehold, Gloucester, Hillsborough, and Woodbridge all have ample opportunity to engage in a popular pastime that has existed for thousands of years: betting on their favorites at horse races, in hopes that they’ll pick the biggest winners. Many people take part in off-track wagering at facilities like Favorites, the Freehold Raceway, the Monmouth Park racetrack, and The Meadowlands.

In recent years, off-track wagering has grown even more popular. Increasingly, gamblers all across NJ will spend hours at racetracks in Gloucester County, Vineland, and Bayonne. At these locations, gamblers bet tremendous amounts of money with the hope of winning big. They can also eat, drink, and socialize at these facilities all day.

As appealing as that sounds, many people are at risk of developing a gambling disorder when they frequent establishments like these. Disordered gamblers that live in Vineland, Bayonne, Hillsborough, Woodbridge, and many other areas of New Jersey find it difficult to avoid the lure of gambling at the racetracks, thanks to their close proximity. Seeing billboards or other advertisements can trigger the urge to gamble even after they expend much time and effort into recovery.

The Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey (CCGNJ) has dedicated itself to one purpose: helping disordered gamblers break free of their problematic behavior. With the correct support and treatment, anyone can recover.  If you think that you or a loved one may have a gambling problem, get immediate support by calling or texting our 24/7 hotline, 800-GAMBLER.

Running in Circles

The cycle of disordered gambling can be quite difficult – if not impossible – for an individual to break without outside support and treatment. After losing much of their money, disordered gamblers often chase their losses with more wagers. They may view “winning big” as a quick-fix solution to impending bankruptcy. Unfortunately, the stress that financial issues create may drive them to gamble just to feel the surge of excitement they experience as they watch the horses run – and to push away impending feelings of anxiety and depression.

Off-track wagering also frequently involves a huge social component. For some, their betting activities may have started as a way to stay close to certain friends or family members, meaning that they might strongly associate gambling with their relationships, even when disordered gambling has a harmful effect on loved ones. Problem gamblers are also at risk of developing an alcohol use disorder, especially when many racing establishments serve alcohol. The presence of a substance use disorder makes recovery for disordered gamblers a more difficult feat to achieve. Fortunately, there is hope.

Support, Treatment, and Hope

The Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey offers access to numerous programs and services that can help people who have an unhealthy relationship with off-track wagering. When you call or text our hotline, 800-GAMBLER, one of our representatives will help you or a loved one find resources like professional counselors or local Gamblers Anonymous meetings in NJ. Our hotline will always remain free, confidential, and available 24/7.

To learn more about us and all the resources we provide, give our hotline a call or visit our homepage. We are a private, non-profit organization dedicated to helping disordered gamblers recover throughout the entire state of New Jersey.

If you are worried about your or a loved one’s excessive racetrack wagering and are looking for gambling problem help in New Jersey, call or text us as soon as possible. No matter how hopeless the situation may feel, any disordered gambler can recover and turn their lives around. Call or text 800-GAMBLER today.

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