"Any other advertisement will be about gambling": addicts talk about the fight against the blockage

"Any other advertisement will be about gambling": addicts talk about the fight against the blockage

07.05.2021 0 By Andrzej Sikorski

The past year has been particularly difficult for gambling addicts struggling with their addiction.

High street bookmakers were closed for much of the year, but online sports betting and casinos made a crazy trade.

During the first blockade, gambling companies agreed to stop advertising, in recognition of the potential dangers to vulnerable people locked up in their homes. This commitment was not repeated in subsequent blockades.

Alex, 41, director of a Lancashire company , he turned to the NHS Northern Gambling Service - one of only three in the country - after trying to find treatment in his area.

He suffered from alcohol and drug addiction, but said escaping gambling was more difficult.

“Gambling is unique. There are ways to avoid drinking and drugs. When I'm sitting at home now, any other ad will be about gambling, it's just everywhere during the lockdown.

“There is nothing positive now that is worth paying attention to. -it's just to run away, get into the casino, into my little gambling world.

“I live alone with my dog and getting through [the pandemic] is already difficult. Just having a weird conversation with a family member, instead of seeing people and cuddling, made me feel isolated and lonely, ”he said.

Last year, Alex went to a private drug rehabilitation center in Spain, but discovered again that his gambling problem was not well understood.

He said, “When I got back to Britain it was only a matter of time and it happened quickly.

“I immediately got back to horses and betting. It quickly turned into a casino because all you have to do is press a button. I would start with 50p of every horse bet and before I know it I have lost £ 2,000 in the casino. "

Jordan from Cheshire , whose name was changed at his request, he tried various methods of giving up gambling without success.

“Bookmakers have records [for industry-funded treatment services], but it was always just a leaflet, and when you're there, you don't want to stop.

“The closure made it worse because some stores were closed at the time, so I would be online more than I would. You can do a lot of damage in stores, but it's not like on the Internet, with a turnover of £ 500 in seconds. "

Jordan has attended sessions on the NHS Northern Gambling Service, which offers a cognitive behavioral therapy preferred by many gambling experts, and has been betting-free for almost eight months.