According to the UK’s Gambling Commission, some students have run up gambling debts of £10,000 or more and the organisation is concerned about the impact gambling is having on undergraduates.
Director Ben Haden told the BBC the commission wants universities to provide the same level of information and support about the risks from gambling as they do for drugs, alcohol and safe sex.
Haden added: “Clearly with the raft of new students heading to uni at this time of year we should do more for the student population.”
He told the BBC the Commission had appointed research agency YouthSight to conduct an online survey of 1,000 people and results suggested that three out of five students had gambled in the four weeks before they responded to the August survey.
Furthermore, one in eight undergraduates surveyed said they had missed lectures or seminars because of gambling. If the results were reflected across the UK, the Gambling Commission said that more than 100,000 students may be in some gambling debt.
The NHS says the anticipation and thrill of gambling creates a natural high that can become addictive and that there may be as many as 593,000 problem gamblers in Great Britain.
The internet has made gambling more accessible and problem gamblers are more likely to suffer from low self-esteem, anxiety, stress and depression.
The National Council for Hypnotherapy, the largest not-for-profit professional organisation for hypnotherapists in the UK, says treating problems like stress, anxiety and low-self esteem is common for therapists but addictions can be effectively treated through hypnotherapy too.
“An unwanted habit or addiction is something you feel you have no control over which affects your life and the lives of those you care about,” says the NCH. “Habits such as overeating or smoking are the most common, but there are many other behaviours that affect people’s lives, make them unhappy or cause a risk to their health and the health of those around them.”
But, adds the NCH: “The good news is that you are in control, you can change how you react to certain situations, and you can protect yourself in ways that are healthy and which allow you succeed and grow stronger in body and mind. You just need to know how to change it, and to believe you can.”
Hypnotherapy works rapidly with bad habits and behaviours because it works directly with the subconscious, bypassing the critical mind and getting to the root of the issue so that changes can be made quickly and efficiently.
Says the NCH: “Depending on what you are seeing the therapist for, they will assess your habit and write a treatment plan for you based on a range of different techniques. Each hypnotherapist will work with you differently. Your hypnotherapist will then assess your commitment to the treatment, as the desire to stop the behaviour or change the behaviour must come from you.”
National gambling help charity Gamcare says it dealt with more than 46,000 calls last year to its helpline, of which 78% were gamblers and 28% under the age of 25, adding that a total of 40% of callers had been gambling for less than four years.
It is not too late to seek help to break the habit. Contact an NCH therapist near you by clicking here to access their directory.