A recent study conducted by the UK’s Swansea University has revealed a serious problem among veterans of the country’s armed forces. According to the findings, more than 43% of them suffer from gambling addiction problems. This figure was 10 times higher than among non-military citizens. There is a higher utilization of health and social services among veterans with ludomania. More work hours are spent, and encounters with police are more frequent. Thus, supporting such people costs the state budget significantly more.
These studies support the need for an internal economic review to examine veterans’ gaming behavior. “Of course, costs may increase for those who have been diagnosed with these conditions. However, it will clearly help to reduce the future financial costs of utilizing medical resources, making contact with justice, and paying off accumulated debt,” concludes Professor Simon Diamond from Swansea University’s School of Psychology.
The study further confirms the relevance of the universal alarm that gambling contributes to health problems. And data from the BMJ Military Medical Journal indicates an increased risk among veterans. The situation is exacerbated by the advertising of gambling on the Internet. There are thousands of sites like https://twinspinca.com/ that popularize no-deposit bonuses and gambling in general. Current post-service mental health assessments do not currently include a study of gambling behavior. This represents a major gap in the overall health management of veterans.
This study included over 5,000 participants, including 1,000 military veterans. Based on the results, it is found that most of them have higher utilization of various health services and contact with social workers compared to civilians. They also seek treatment for gambling addiction, illicit substance abuse, and alcohol abuse.
It’s also worth noting that veterans are found to have higher utilization of health and social services, as well as increased missed work hours, more interaction with criminal justice, and high levels of debt. These can be related not only to gambling addiction but also to other physical and mental health issues, which increases the level of overall social costs for former military members.
The cost of all this turns out to be quite high. On average, the social and economic costs for veterans with ludomania exceed those of non-military individuals by over £600 per person. This calls for further analysis of the problem and the search for effective preventive measures.