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Anna Karamazina

26.11.2022 15:00

Researchers note a rise in sports wagering since Tennessee legalized it in 2018

According to specialists, the number of people who bet on sports has increased here in the Mid-South.

As concluded by experts from the Institute for Gambling Education and Research, up to 200,000 people in Tennessee are aware of the negative effects of gambling, yet only one in ten of those individuals would seek help if they had gambling issues. The institute sees 25 to 30 patients each week, according to researchers.

2018 saw the legalization of sports betting. Many of the customers who used to visit the clinic generally complained about gambling as it pertained to casinos and lotteries, but now more individuals are coming in because of gambling on sports, according to experts at the Institute for Gambling Education and Research at the University of Memphis.

Researchers have found that people as young as 30 years old are seeking support, and most of them are men. Sports gambling has a lot of stigma attached to it, and many hide it and lie about it, which is one of the main problems. They do not want to acknowledge an issue. In reality, the research revealed that over half of those identified as having a problem with gambling don't actually think they do, according to James Whelan, director of the Institute for Gambling Education and Research.

Sports betting was previously only legal in Nevada, according to research, but as of 2018, it is now legal everywhere, and anybody who is 21 years or older may place a wager at their leisure using a smartphone.

According to Whelan, research is being done to determine the causes of excessive gambling. Some degree of financial trouble is probably the biggest one for some folks. They are spending more money than they ought to or what they could properly do, according to Whelan. All the way to the moment when individuals do harm to their financial situation, to the point where they are unable to pay their mortgage and other debts.

As commented by Whelan, the state legislature's 5% money is being used to find solutions to the issues with mental health and substance misuse programs.

One of the things they've discovered is that every person who has a serious gambling issue affects at least six other individuals in their lives, according to Whelan. Sports bettors should be prepared to establish boundaries, according to University of Memphis Gambling Clinic therapist Marcos Lerma. Whatever that means, Lerma said, whether it be setting a specific amount of time constraints or only spending money that you have available to you.

The institution offers counseling if you believe that you or someone you know may be an addict.

“We help them evaluate their pros and cons within the treatment, and then we’ll typically do a timeline followed by a calendar where we’ll evaluate their past spending and how much time they spent gambling, money they spent gambling, to give them an overall bigger picture of their gambling behavior,” Lerma continued.

They will also aid in the search for a substitute. The fundamental objective is for the therapists to act as a mentor. Additionally, those with gambling issues have much greater incidence of mental disorders, anxiety, suicide thoughts, and attempts.

You may get in touch with the gambling clinic at the University of Memphis if you or someone you know feels like they might need help.

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