The United Kingdom’s number of addicted gamblers is on the rise
The casino games enthusiasts in the United Kingdom enjoy a very accessible and inviting gambling market. Many British people have gambled at least once and for some is even a hobby. Today, however, the country is facing a rise in the number of problem gamblers.
Over 2 million problem gamblers
The Gambling Commission released a report containing data about the behaviour of gamers from Scotland, Wales, and England in 2015. This shows that the number of players with ages of 16 and over suffering from a gambling addiction has grown to about 430,000 in only three years. This makes up for 0.8% of the country’s population, while in 2012 it was 0.6%.
There are now more than 2.3 million people at risk of addiction. Therefore, GambleAware – an organization that promotes responsible gaming and funds treatment for problem gamblers – has recently called for a £10 million funding from the industry per year. This will help gamers get treatment and overcome the challenges they are facing.
What type of players are at risk?
More than 60% of adults living in the United Kingdom had gambled in the past year. Men seem to be more attracted to this activity, with a participation of 66% compared to only 59% of women. However, they also have a higher risk of developing an addiction.
Even if they are not considered to be gambling activities by many people, National Lottery draws were the most popular among gamers. They are followed by scratch cards and other lotteries and the region with the highest participation was Scotland (68% ).
When it comes to problem and at-risk players, they seem to prefer online casino games. Here, they spend time playing slot machines, bingo, and betting machines.
What gambling addiction is and how to handle it?
Gambling can be fun and extremely rewarding, but it can also easily become addictive. Players suffering from this can experience a lot of negative effects on their lives and work, along with health issues. In very severe cases, they can also become suicidal, have financial difficulties, and even resort to crime.
This can all be avoided by getting treatment as soon as possible. It can include therapy, entering a rehabilitation program, and some lifestyle changes. In cases when this problem is linked to an underlying mental health condition, medication might also help.
Players that are at risk or already suffering from this addiction should talk to a doctor or get in contact with organizations such as GamCare and GambleAware.
Gambling is and should remain a fun and relaxing activity, but it can become a real problem. Keeping track of wins and losses and indulging in other activities can help gamers enjoy the fun of casino games without being exposed to the risk of addiction.