What Is Gambling for People with Disabilities?

The contributions of engaging in leisure and recreational activities in enhancing life and well-being are widely discussed and encouraged. However, little is known about how the disabled engage with these activities compared to the ordinary individual. People who fall into this category have mental or physical conditions that limit their movement, activities, or senses. There are numerous types of disabilities, and they usually fall into these six general categories:

Many industries put in efforts of inclusion to support the delivery of services to people with these limitations. This article delves into the experiences of disabled individuals in the gambling niche.

Category Types of Disability
Physical This disability kind affects functional, mobility, and/or physiological mobility. They can be intermittent, fluctuating, progressive, chronic, or stable. They can also be visible or invisible. These disabilities include Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, Chronic Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Spina Bifida, and chronic fatigue syndrome.
Visual This type encompasses anything less than normal vision. 90% of people in this category are described as visually impaired. The rest are legally blind and have 10% or less normal vision. Aside from birth defects, common causes for these disabilities include Glaucoma, cataracts, diabetes, and muscular degeneration.
Hearing This category can be further be broken down into four types: Deaf (profound hearing loss), deafened (acquired hearing loss in adulthood), hard of hearing (residual hearing and speech are used to communicate), deafblind (hearing loss coupled with sight loss).
Mental These disabilities are characterized by abnormal perceptions, thoughts, relationships, and emotions. They include schizophrenia, dementia, manic depression, eating disorders, Alzheimer’s, autism, and psychoses.
Intellectual This category includes disabilities that affect intellectual development, leaving the affected individual with a mental capacity that is significantly below average. Common causes are impaired brain development before, during, or right after birth, drugs and alcohol abuse by pregnant mothers, childhood illnesses, and poverty.
Learning This disability type affects the central nervous system, inhibiting the learning process. People with learning disabilities have trouble interpreting what they hear or see.

Accessibility

Over the years, brick-and-mortar establishments have removed or reduced barriers to accommodate people with disabilities. However, work needs to be done for this group of people to be more independent and involved in exploring the many options abled people have. These limitations mainly apply to people with physical, visual, and hearing disabilities, and here is what they include.

 Physical Barriers

These are structural obstacles that block or prevent mobility and access, such as steps or curbs or the absence of a weight scale to help wheelchair users step up. Most location-based casinos may have these obstacles on their casino floor that limit them from exploring all the available games. In some cases, they cannot even get through the door. However, in some cases, mobile gambling may be very useful.

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Communication Barriers

These barriers limit people with affected reading, speaking, hearing, and understanding. Often, you will run into games and other casino services lacking braille, screen readers, or small print and large print versions of the material. People with hearing impairment are also locked out of games without captioning or manual interpretation. Casino staff can also use long sentences, technical language, or multi-syllable words that are hard to understand by people with cognitive impairments.

Attitudinal Barriers

These are the most basic barriers that contribute to the rise of others. Many establishments overlook the challenges of accessing standard services and participating in everyday life. Abled people sometimes stereotype those with disabilities and assume their life quality is poor; hence, they do not bother making accessibility a priority. Also, disabled people often face prejudice, stigma, and discrimination. They are seen as a tragedy that needs to be prevented or cured, an indication that they cannot meet society’s behavioral standards, or as a punishment for wrongdoing.

Online Gambling

Internet gambling comes with many advantages that cannot be experienced when playing games in brick-and-mortar establishments. The platform has helped level the playing field by a significant degree for disabled people. Since online casinos can be entered with a few clicks, this group does not have to worry about facing physical, attitudinal, and communication barriers. Most smartphones and PCs solve limitations faced by visually impaired people by offering downloadable screen reader apps. These applications use synthesized speech to read out loud whatever is displayed on the screen. Therefore, the online gambling experience is almost similar to that of an abled person and offers access to a range of services.

A Vast Array of Games

Online casinos offer access to thousands of games to all their clients with the same level of accessibility. These gambling establishments usually provide games in numerous categories to cover every spectrum of gamblers’ needs. The sets are sourced from different software developers with varying approaches to game development. The most prominent ones include Play’n Go, Red Tiger, NetEnt, Playtech, Pragmatic Play, Microgaming, NoLimit City, and Triple Edge Studios. The provided games fall into common categories in all casinos, let’s see what they are.

Game Category Popular Titles
Slots Book of Dead, Starburst, Gonzo’s Quest Megaways, 9 Pots of Gold, Immortal Romance Mega Moolah, Dynamite Riches Megaways, Reactoonz 2, Sherlock & Moriarty WowPot
Roulette Multifire Roulette, European Roulette, French Roulette, Football Roulette, Diamond Bet Roulette, Age of the Gods Roulette, American Roulette, Live Roulette, Double Ball Roulette
Poker Oasis Poker, Let It Ride, Pai Gow Poker, Caribbean Stud Poker, Casino Hold’em, Mississippi Stud, Three-Card Brag, Five-Card Draw, Live Poker, Texas Hedge’Em
Blackjack Atlantic City Blackjack, Premium Blackjack, Live Blackjack, Blackjack Perfect Pairs, Single Deck Blackjack, Double Exposure, Elimination Blackjack, Blackjack Switch
Video poker Jacks or Better, Deuces Wild, Bonus Poker, Double Bonus Poker, All American, Two Ways Royal, Aces and Faces, Aces and Eights
Baccarat Wall Street Baccarat, No Commission Baccarat, Baccarat Squeeze, Baccara Remastered, Live Baccarat, Baccarat Professional Series, Big Win Baccarat, Punto Banco
Live game shows Mega Ball, Dream Catcher, Monopoly Live, Deal or No Deal, Crazy Time, Adventures Beyond Wonderland, Live Football Studios, Gonzo’s Treasure Hunt, Fortune Finder
Instant win games Aviator, Slingo, Virtual Greyhounds, Age of the Gods: Spin a Win, The Incredible Balloon Machine, Virtual Racing, Virtual Tennis, Instant Virtual Speedway, Baking Bonanza
Bingo Traditional American Bingo, 75-Ball Bingo, 80-Ball Bingo, 90-Ball Bingo, Math Bingo, Bingo Bonanza, Blackout, Death Bingo
Scratch cards Cut the Grass, Immortal Romance Scratch, Fishin’ Frenzy Scratch Card, Sure Win Scratch, King Kong Cash, Instant Football, Happy Scratch, King Treasure
Dice games Lightning Dice, Sic Bo, Roller Coaster Dice, Craps, Yatzy, Poker Dice, Magic Dice, Diabolic Throw, Robot Dice
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Bonuses and Promotions

In online casinos, disabled people can claim incentives like anyone else as long as they qualify. Almost all gambling destinations offer gifts to entice players into registering and playing for actual cash. The bonuses come in various shapes and sizes, and the most popular ones are:

  • Match promotions – meet a percentage of the deposit and can cover one or multiple cash-ins;
  • Cashbacks – gift back a portion of the amount spent on bets, mostly losses;
  • Free spins – gift free rounds for slot machines;
  • Free chips – award free rounds for table and card games like roulette, blackjack, poker, and baccarat;
  • Loyalty points – they can be exchanged for real money or used to climb higher on a VIP scheme.

The most popular bonus package is the welcome offer granted to new players, which can include the no deposit bonus casino promotion. Gambling clubs also feature reload bonuses for returning clients.

Security

Online casino security applies to every member, even those that are disabled. The best gambling houses recognize the risks of virtual information and money transactions, primarily financial and identity theft. Accordingly, they often have SSL or TCL encryption protocols in place to restrict unauthorized third parties. Also, when depositing and withdrawal significant amounts, most casinos require documents proving account ownership. Nonetheless, disabled people should still be on the lookout for rogue sites that operate without proper certification or have bad reviews.

Client Care

As usual no deposit bonus mobile casino has multiple channels that players can use to reach them if they run into any issues. Hearing-impaired gamers can use live chat or email, while the visually impaired can use phone or other provided options with the help of screen reader apps. The best gambling destinations work with responsive and well-educated customer care agents that help with issues in a timely fashion.

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Risk of Addiction

It’s no mystery that gambling is a highly addictive habit, and it is often compared to drug dependency. The risk, flashy colours, and potentially big wins in casino games trigger dopamine release, and if it happens too often, players develop a habit to look for the thrills permanently. The habit then affects their movement, memory, motivation, and pleasure. Persistent gambling keeps the brain awash with dopamine, building up a tolerance and making it impossible for normal levels to induce euphoria.

People with mental disorders are usually predisposed to fall victim to gambling addiction. Research indicates that such disabilities magnify one’s focus on gambling than ordinary people, making them more likely to fall victim to compulsive gambling. For example, the treatments used to reverse the effects of Parkinson’s disease often dry up dopamine-producing neurons. Most patients become dopamine junkies and end up gambling pathologically, chasing a high. Also, people suffering from depression, OCD, and anxiety can use the practice as a crutch to escape the reality of their problems. Signs exhibited by such individuals include:

  • Constant thoughts about gambling;
  • Inability to control how often they reach for their phone or PC after being intentional about quitting;
  • Financial problems due to spending beyond their limits, resulting in borrowing or stealing;
  • Lying about how often they engage in the habit.

The Conclusion

Depending on the limitations, disabled people can experience gambling like ordinary people or be locked out of the experience altogether. Many casinos are making improvements to include assistive technology to help such individuals fully engage in the activities they have to offer. Online gambling houses perform far better than their location-based counterparts due to their portability, but they still have ways to go to provide equal opportunities.

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About the Author: Cory Weinberg

"Alcohol evangelist. Devoted twitter guru. Lifelong coffee expert. Music nerd."

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