Gambling has become a growing problem in all areas across the UK. Online gambling has made it much more accessible and, as a result, thousands of people suffer from growing debts because of a habit they cannot break.
There are also a growing number of online gaming sites offering new customers the chance to get free money to play with once they make their first deposit. Many problem gamblers will have accounts on various gaming sites because, each time they open a new account, they will get more cash to play with.
With more and more gambling advertisements on TV and in other media outlets, it is no surprise that many people across the country are becoming hooked on this activity.
Gambling is a growing problem among teenagers in Wales, according to Mick Antoniw, Pontypridd’s Assembly Member. He says that over 3,000 Welsh teenagers are struggling with gambling addictions, which are leaving them suffering from mental health and other problems. He has blamed the surge in online betting sites, which make the activity more accessible to teenagers, and the increased exposure advertisements. According to Mr Antoniw, the wellbeing of young people across the country is being threatened. He said, “Today’s young people are exposed to gambling in ways none of us ever were.”
Mr Antoniw is also worried about the fact that there will be an expected increase in online gambling by thirty-four per cent by next year. He believes that there are many problem gamblers among university students and that this is no doubt negatively affecting their studies. He said, “Gambling is highly addictive and impacts hugely on students’ personal lives, which inevitably leads to academic under-performance and the potential for student loans to be used to finance gambling addiction.”
Mr Antoniw believes that gambling could become an epidemic in Wales, with a chance that the future for the next generation could see gambling and sport ‘intrinsically linked’. According to the assembly member, the country needs to realise the seriousness of problem gambling and implement education strategies to help prevent more young people from living a life destroyed by a gambling addiction.
The minister also feels that the Assembly needs to have greater powers in order to be able to control the number of fixed odds betting terminals and gambling outlets that become available within Welsh communities.
Consequences of Gambling Addiction
According to one of the student advisors at the University of South Wales, Debra Thorne, there are a growing number of students at the university who are problem gamblers. She says that, while this causes financial problems, there are also other consequences such as mental health problems, relationship breakdowns and problems with studying. In addition, those students who have families to support find it difficult to do so because of their gambling habits. She said that this problem affected students from educational facilities across Wales. There is a definite increase in the number of students accessing gambling sites via mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.
A Nationwide Problem
Although there are growing numbers of students developing gambling habits, they are not alone. People all over the UK are becoming hooked on online gaming sites and, in many instances, are encouraged to do so by promises of the chance to ‘win big’ in advertisements. For most people, these big wins never come.
There is help available for those who are suffering from all types of addiction. Addiction Helper has a team of expert advisors who can provide you with the information and advice you need to beat your addiction. Call today for more information on the treatments available and how to access them.