The World Cup kicked off in Brazil last month, and it’ll end in two weeks. During this period, the lives of frequent gamblers — both online and offline — have become much more difficult. In Thailand alone, almost 1,000 football gamblers in metropolitan areas were arrested between June 12-23. To break this down, about 870 gamblers, 22 hosts, 16 bookmakers and one online gambling organiser were legally charged. More than 700 football gambling websites in Thailand were shutdown, and these numbers are rising.
What’s more alarming is the fact that gambling is no longer widespread among adults only. A recent study by the Centre for Gambling Studies, Chulalongkorn University’s Faculty of Economics, suggested that first-time gamblers can be below the age of 15, meaning they learn how to bet even before they reach high school.
Thai society has been connected to gambling for a long time, many times it is even considered an entertainment. But in fact, gambling is much more than just buying a lottery ticket once a month or playing a slot machine. According to psychiatrist Dr Spain Uneanong, gambling can be addictive. And when gambling goes that far, it is considered a disease.
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