Signs and Symptoms of a Fantasy Sports Addiction

Signs and Symptoms of a Fantasy Sports Addiction

Much like gambling, daily fantasy sports can be addicting as it presents as a solution for easy money, but as losses stack up it can lead to financial despair. With the ever-growing popularity of daily fantasy spots, playing fantasy sports for money is far easier and more accessible than it has ever been.

One of the important things to remember with Daily Fantasy Sports is that the odds are never in your favor. Even if you are better than the guy you are facing in a head to head, the house takes 10-15%, even if you win this contest, then lose the next, you are still down 10-15%.

It is our experience that people that have issues with fantasy sports generally suffer from one of three things: First, they are addicted to the adrenaline rush that comes along with entering high stakes fantasy lineups. So much so that they chase it until they are on the brink of financial ruin.

The second type of fantasy sports addiction that is very common in this industry is the fantasy player that plays because he is desperate for money. Maybe he has hit a big prize in the past that has fueled his behavior, but he is essentially chasing those results thinking he can repeat that success at will.

The third and final fantasy addict is obsessed with the fame that they perceive the big name players in the industry as having. They have created an atmosphere in their own life that directly ties their personal success and worth to their fantasy performance.

What are the Signs of a Fantasy Sports Addiction?

Knowing what signs to look for in yourself or a loved one is essential to identifying fantasy addiction and beginning to treat the issue. Here are a few things to keep in mind when attempting to identify a possible fantasy addiction:

  • Trouble controlling your fantasy sports limits – If you or someone you know can not set limits for the amount of time or money you spend on fantasy each week then you may have an addiction.
  • Spending money on DFS when you can’t afford to – This goes hand in hand with the first sign. If there are weeks where you can’t afford to play fantasy, but feel a need to spend money or go into debt to play, this is another sign of a problem.
  • Keeping your fantasy sports spending, wins, losses, etc secretive – This is one of those tell tale signs of addiction that holds true regardless of what your addiction is to. If you feel the need to hide something that you are doing, you likely don’t have control over your behavior.
  • People around you show concern over your behavior – This may seem obvious, but if your friends and family think you have a problem, this is a legitimate cause for concern. Even if you don’t believe you have lost control over your fantasy sports addiction, if the people around you are concerned, you should be as well.
  • Symptoms that Frequently Coincide With a Fantasy Sports Addiction

    The most common symptoms that accompany a fantasy sports addiction are emotional. The person can feel the wait of their addiction and it will affect their personality. Some emotional symptoms to watch for include: extreme mood swings, anxiety, and often depression that can be so crippling that it leads to suicidal thoughts.

    These emotional symptoms are going to be much easier to spot than anything physical. That being said, there are physical symptoms that accompany a fantasy sports addiction.

    The anxiety that accompanies the addiction can often lead to many sleepless nights. A lack of sleep can affect ones appearance in several ways: bags under eyes, lack of energy, large weight fluctuations in either direction, and pale skin are just a few.

    If you suspect someone has a fantasy sports addiction, using physical symptoms in addition to the other signs and symptoms we mentioned, can help to confirm the issue.

    What Can I Do?

    If you or someone you know has a gaming addiction, the best thing you can do is to get help. While there are several resources for fantasy gaming addicts, the National Center for Responsible Gaming or NCRG is a great place to start. The NCRG’s national hotline number is 1-800-522-4700.

    You can also contact a 24 Hour Confidential National Helpline Number: 1-800-522-4700 or New York Specific Number: 877-846-7369 for additional assistance provided by the NCPG.

    Founded in 1996 as a charitable organization, the National Center for Responsible Gaming is exclusively devoted to funding research for gaming-related issues and effective methods of treatment. The research is scientific, peer-reviewed, and focused on prevention, diagnostic, intervention and treatment strategies, and advancing public education about responsible gaming.

    The NCRG website provides a variety of support and referral sources for help with counseling and crisis support for any affected by a gaming-related issue. They also offer health resources to give you a better idea of how this addiction can affect different aspects of your life.

    If you are having an issue and are looking for something actionable to try right now? Close you accounts or take advantage of things like Self-Exclusion or Self-Limitation. Both FanDuel and DraftKings offer self exclusion, and this is a great way to start the process of dealing with your problems today.

    A fantasy sports addiction is a serious condition that can cause legitimate physical, emotional, and financial problems if not dealt with immediately.