Are Professional Poker Players Gambling Addicts?


Poker is a card game involving betting on the outcome of each hand of cards and making wagers on them, popular both as entertainment and as a source of income for many people. While some make their living playing poker professionally, others simply enjoy doing it as a leisure activity or side activity. Some professionals even turn poker into their full-time career by participating in international tournaments all year long – yet many consider these professionals gambling addicts?

According to a study published in Journal of Behavioural Addictions, professional poker players are not compulsive gamblers. Researchers examined records of online poker players and discovered that only 1 out of every 5 were considered compulsive gamblers; only 1/3 reported any detrimental impact from gambling behavior on daily life; thus suggesting most do not suffer from problem gambling and do not require treatment for it.

Professional poker players don’t fall into gambling addiction because they treat it like a business, tracking results and creating bankroll plans while practicing long hours. Gambling addicts on the other hand might struggle to remain focused for extended periods or treat gambling seriously as a business enterprise.

Studies have also demonstrated that more experienced players have less risk of pathological gambling due to having greater skill in the game and being able to play longer periods (Laakasuo et al. 2015 and Palomaki et al. 2014). Unfortunately, research on this correlation remains inadequate, thus more study must be conducted into it.

Professional poker players also possess an exceptional work ethic that contributes to their success outside the poker table. They don’t allow losses to derail them from pursuing their passion and push through even when faced with significant financial setbacks. Conversely, those suffering from gambling addiction are more likely to put aside other aspects of their life and focus solely on gambling – thus professional poker players tend not to fall prey to gambling addiction. If you know a poker player who is struggling with an addiction, it is vital that they seek help. At the Poker Player’s Assistance Program website they can find help through an online screening tool which will allow them to assess if they have gambling disorder or not; there is also access to treatment programs for gambling addiction on this site. Gambling addiction can have detrimental repercussions in both personal and professional areas.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts