September 28 is Gambling Addiction Day and the Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA) is providing insight into the dangers of online sports betting. With help from the Federal Government Commissioner for Addiction and Drug Issues, information has been provided on how players are at risk.
The BZgA wants to see changes made in Germany when it comes to gambling advertising. The group is calling for sports betting ads to cease before 9 pm. Ads should not be posted online or on television.
Advertising is Spreading Quickly
Burkhard Blienert, the Federal Government Commissioner for Addiction and Drug Issues, stated that advertising is moving quickly, at a breakneck speed, for online gambling and sports betting. The trend is a concern because hundreds of thousands of people are addicted or have a problem with gambling. Blienert is calling for a ban of advertising after 9 pm for television and online ads.
Acting Director of BZgA, Professor Dr. Martin Dietrich points out that there is a high risk of addiction connected to online gambling offers. The options are available 24/7, and they lure people in with a promise of large winnings.
Dr. Dietrich says the ads discuss the opportunity for quick profits, making online sports betting a popular choice among gamblers. This is why awareness of the risk is needed so countermeasures can be made in good time. The BZgA offers options for those who are struggling with gambling addiction, including an online program that helps make changes in gambling behavior.
On July 1, 2021, the State Treaty on Gambling came into effect in Germany. Since that time, online sports betting has been in effect. The risk of individuals developing a problem with gambling is high among online gamblers, particularly in the sports betting sector. The issue of pathological gambling has been deemed a disease and was added to the international classification systems as a gambling disorder.
Preventing Gambling Addiction
The BZgA is working hard to prevent gambling addiction and provides support measures for players. The group offers information and support with an information brochure with plenty of advice on the topic. The group launched the “Check your game” campaign where the BZgA provides information online about responsible gambling.
Players can use a self-test online to review if their gaming behavior is a problem. If so, a free online behavior change program is offered. Players can learn more about how to make changes or find further support.
A recent gambling survey by the BZgA shows that in Germany, there are around 229,000 problem gamblers and 200,000 pathological gamblers.