Sweden is facing changes in its economic climate, just like other European nations. Although the cost of living is rising, many citizens are already feeling the effects of the economic crisis. Anders Hakansson is a professor at Lund University of Psychiatry and a doctor at Malmo’s addiction clinic. A report published by the newspaper Aftonbladet shows that the economic crisis can help problem gambling thrive.
Professor Sigmund pointed out that there is currently no solid research to show gambling patterns in Sweden. The Public Health Agency measures the number of people in Sweden who are affected by problem gambling. The Agency still provides statistics on the problem gambling rate each year. This data shows that in 2021, just over 4% of the Swedish population had problems with gambling.
Hakansson admitted that economic conditions are constantly changing which causes delays in the results. He said that there is a delay before we see an increase in people who seek addiction treatment. Hakansson also pointed out that data is lacking on how long it takes for people to become problem gamblers.
Gambling is a popular choice in times of economic crisis
Professor also mentioned the issue of gambling advertising and problem gambling in times of economic crisis. He stated that it was worrying to see more people attracted to gambling ads that promise immediate financial benefits.
Hakansson cited research that showed people who gamble during financial crises are more likely to develop problem gambling. He also explained that the situation may make it harder for people who have stopped gambling in the past. The risk of problem gambling in those individuals is especially high. Hakansson said that there is a time when it is best to not gamble to win money to solve financial issues.
In December, a proposal was made to combat problem gambling. In an effort to reduce gambling addiction and prevent future problems, the new legislation would allow gambling operators to access additional customer information. Gambling operators will be able monitor clients’ spending habits and make payments to help flag problem gambling.