Gambling Addiction Rates Rising in the Military in 2024

Gambling Addiction Rates Rising in the Military in 2024

Gambling Addiction Rates Rising in the Military in 2024

Clinical Review by:

Clinical Review by:

Clinical Review by:

Published:

Jul 10, 2024

,

01:22 p.m.

ET

Updated:

Jul 12, 2024

,

11:42 a.m.

ET

Published:

Jul 10, 2024

,

01:22 p.m.

ET

Updated:

Jul 12, 2024

,

11:42 a.m.

ET

Published:

Jul 10, 2024

,

01:22 p.m.

ET

Updated:

Jul 12, 2024

,

11:42 a.m.

ET

Sports betting continues to be legalized in more and more states, as it is now live in some form - either retail and/or online - in 38 states across the U.S. Alongside the introduction of new online casino and other gaming products, that means that gambling opportunities are more available than ever for people in all walks of life.

That includes the Armed Forces, who can in fact be even more prone to problem gambling behaviors. With that in mind, let’s explore the latest information and news regarding the rise of gambling addiction in the military.

Gambling addiction in the military: Stats & trends 

In 2018, the Supreme Court repealed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PAPSA), leaving it up to the states to decide on regulated sports betting. However, gambling in general has been available across the country (and world) for much longer than that. It’s been especially accessible to the military, given the fact that some of the most populous U.S. bases are located near casinos, plus some overseas bases even have slot machines on them.

There has regularly been research conducted for those in the Armed Forces for mental health disorders such as PTSD, but the Veterans Affairs (VA) treatment services have also been monitoring problem gambling. Their research found that not only were 10% of veterans problem gamblers – multiples higher than general population averages – but also that 40% met criteria to be at risk for a gambling addiction.

While that is focused on veterans, it is not unique to those who once served, as problem gambling is also an increasing issue among active duty service members. The VA treatment services also found that in the first six months of 2024, there were more patients receiving a diagnosis of problem gambling than there were in all of 2022. Expanding on that, it’s also worth noting that twenty percent of those were women. 

An Army Staff Sargeant’s struggles with Gambling Addiction 

Not only has the VA treatment service provided research to illustrate the big picture, but there has also been a recent spotlight on the specific experiences of former Army Staff Sergeant David Yeager, who has written a book called “Fall-In: A Veteran with a Gambling Addiction.” 

Back in 2001 following the infamous 9/11 attacks, Yeager was stationed in South Korea. It was there that he found himself in a casino and began playing a slot machine. Yeager writes that strangely enough, winning was perhaps the worst outcome for him. That dopamine rush led to him feeling a sense of relief that caused him to want it more.

Sadly that led to developing a gambling addiction in which Yeager ultimately used his title to steal petty cash to fuel his addiction. It even reached a point where his family members were affected by financial instability. 

Wait, what? Slot machines on military bases?

We mentioned that the location of military bases plays a part in the rise of gambling addiction among the armed forces, and that issue is more prominent now than it was back when Yeager developed his addiction.

Those range from within the United States to other countries around the world, demonstrating that there is actual effort being put into keeping these slot machines readily available. There were more than 3,100 slot machines operated by the U.S. Department of Defense as of 2017, and gambling has only become more prominent in recent years.

The justification for those slot machines is the revenue produced from them - over $100 million a year when most recently reported - to fund recreation for service members. Whether it’s the seven casinos within 20 minutes of one military base in Washington state or those located in Germany, Japan and South Korea, gambling opportunities regularly surround our Armed Forces.

Given that fact, there has been legislation introduced pushing to ban these slot machines on overseas military bases. 

New research into gambling addiction among members of the military

After seeing such a rise in problem gambling among the military, innovative research is in motion. The VA treatment service has already found that service members are twice as likely to develop a gambling addiction compared to average citizens, so they are conducting a new survey with results expected in the fall of 2024.

Problem Gambling resources & treatment for the military

With the rise in gambling addiction in the Armed Forces, it’s important that resources are available, and that is where Birches Health comes into play. The treatment provided by Birches is conducted virtually by specialized, licensed clinicians, which can be particularly helpful for service members who need scheduling flexibility and ease of accessibility. 

Every treatment plan from Birches is personalized for each patient to ensure the most beneficial results. There are several ways to get started:

You can also feel free to call 833-483-3838 or email hello@bircheshealth.com to get in contact with the Birches team right away.


SOURCES:

Concerns grow over gambling addiction in the military

Fall In: A Veteran with a Gambling Addiction: Yeager, Dave: 9798889820109: Amazon.com: Books

Slot Machines on U.S. Military Bases Could be Banned - Birches Health | Gambling Addiction Treatment

Problem Gambling and the Military | ncgwg

‘Gambling addiction on steroids’: fears of betting crisis at heart of US military

Military members twice as likely to struggle with gambling: Study.

Sports betting continues to be legalized in more and more states, as it is now live in some form - either retail and/or online - in 38 states across the U.S. Alongside the introduction of new online casino and other gaming products, that means that gambling opportunities are more available than ever for people in all walks of life.

That includes the Armed Forces, who can in fact be even more prone to problem gambling behaviors. With that in mind, let’s explore the latest information and news regarding the rise of gambling addiction in the military.

Gambling addiction in the military: Stats & trends 

In 2018, the Supreme Court repealed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PAPSA), leaving it up to the states to decide on regulated sports betting. However, gambling in general has been available across the country (and world) for much longer than that. It’s been especially accessible to the military, given the fact that some of the most populous U.S. bases are located near casinos, plus some overseas bases even have slot machines on them.

There has regularly been research conducted for those in the Armed Forces for mental health disorders such as PTSD, but the Veterans Affairs (VA) treatment services have also been monitoring problem gambling. Their research found that not only were 10% of veterans problem gamblers – multiples higher than general population averages – but also that 40% met criteria to be at risk for a gambling addiction.

While that is focused on veterans, it is not unique to those who once served, as problem gambling is also an increasing issue among active duty service members. The VA treatment services also found that in the first six months of 2024, there were more patients receiving a diagnosis of problem gambling than there were in all of 2022. Expanding on that, it’s also worth noting that twenty percent of those were women. 

An Army Staff Sargeant’s struggles with Gambling Addiction 

Not only has the VA treatment service provided research to illustrate the big picture, but there has also been a recent spotlight on the specific experiences of former Army Staff Sergeant David Yeager, who has written a book called “Fall-In: A Veteran with a Gambling Addiction.” 

Back in 2001 following the infamous 9/11 attacks, Yeager was stationed in South Korea. It was there that he found himself in a casino and began playing a slot machine. Yeager writes that strangely enough, winning was perhaps the worst outcome for him. That dopamine rush led to him feeling a sense of relief that caused him to want it more.

Sadly that led to developing a gambling addiction in which Yeager ultimately used his title to steal petty cash to fuel his addiction. It even reached a point where his family members were affected by financial instability. 

Wait, what? Slot machines on military bases?

We mentioned that the location of military bases plays a part in the rise of gambling addiction among the armed forces, and that issue is more prominent now than it was back when Yeager developed his addiction.

Those range from within the United States to other countries around the world, demonstrating that there is actual effort being put into keeping these slot machines readily available. There were more than 3,100 slot machines operated by the U.S. Department of Defense as of 2017, and gambling has only become more prominent in recent years.

The justification for those slot machines is the revenue produced from them - over $100 million a year when most recently reported - to fund recreation for service members. Whether it’s the seven casinos within 20 minutes of one military base in Washington state or those located in Germany, Japan and South Korea, gambling opportunities regularly surround our Armed Forces.

Given that fact, there has been legislation introduced pushing to ban these slot machines on overseas military bases. 

New research into gambling addiction among members of the military

After seeing such a rise in problem gambling among the military, innovative research is in motion. The VA treatment service has already found that service members are twice as likely to develop a gambling addiction compared to average citizens, so they are conducting a new survey with results expected in the fall of 2024.

Problem Gambling resources & treatment for the military

With the rise in gambling addiction in the Armed Forces, it’s important that resources are available, and that is where Birches Health comes into play. The treatment provided by Birches is conducted virtually by specialized, licensed clinicians, which can be particularly helpful for service members who need scheduling flexibility and ease of accessibility. 

Every treatment plan from Birches is personalized for each patient to ensure the most beneficial results. There are several ways to get started:

You can also feel free to call 833-483-3838 or email hello@bircheshealth.com to get in contact with the Birches team right away.


SOURCES:

Concerns grow over gambling addiction in the military

Fall In: A Veteran with a Gambling Addiction: Yeager, Dave: 9798889820109: Amazon.com: Books

Slot Machines on U.S. Military Bases Could be Banned - Birches Health | Gambling Addiction Treatment

Problem Gambling and the Military | ncgwg

‘Gambling addiction on steroids’: fears of betting crisis at heart of US military

Military members twice as likely to struggle with gambling: Study.

Sports betting continues to be legalized in more and more states, as it is now live in some form - either retail and/or online - in 38 states across the U.S. Alongside the introduction of new online casino and other gaming products, that means that gambling opportunities are more available than ever for people in all walks of life.

That includes the Armed Forces, who can in fact be even more prone to problem gambling behaviors. With that in mind, let’s explore the latest information and news regarding the rise of gambling addiction in the military.

Gambling addiction in the military: Stats & trends 

In 2018, the Supreme Court repealed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PAPSA), leaving it up to the states to decide on regulated sports betting. However, gambling in general has been available across the country (and world) for much longer than that. It’s been especially accessible to the military, given the fact that some of the most populous U.S. bases are located near casinos, plus some overseas bases even have slot machines on them.

There has regularly been research conducted for those in the Armed Forces for mental health disorders such as PTSD, but the Veterans Affairs (VA) treatment services have also been monitoring problem gambling. Their research found that not only were 10% of veterans problem gamblers – multiples higher than general population averages – but also that 40% met criteria to be at risk for a gambling addiction.

While that is focused on veterans, it is not unique to those who once served, as problem gambling is also an increasing issue among active duty service members. The VA treatment services also found that in the first six months of 2024, there were more patients receiving a diagnosis of problem gambling than there were in all of 2022. Expanding on that, it’s also worth noting that twenty percent of those were women. 

An Army Staff Sargeant’s struggles with Gambling Addiction 

Not only has the VA treatment service provided research to illustrate the big picture, but there has also been a recent spotlight on the specific experiences of former Army Staff Sergeant David Yeager, who has written a book called “Fall-In: A Veteran with a Gambling Addiction.” 

Back in 2001 following the infamous 9/11 attacks, Yeager was stationed in South Korea. It was there that he found himself in a casino and began playing a slot machine. Yeager writes that strangely enough, winning was perhaps the worst outcome for him. That dopamine rush led to him feeling a sense of relief that caused him to want it more.

Sadly that led to developing a gambling addiction in which Yeager ultimately used his title to steal petty cash to fuel his addiction. It even reached a point where his family members were affected by financial instability. 

Wait, what? Slot machines on military bases?

We mentioned that the location of military bases plays a part in the rise of gambling addiction among the armed forces, and that issue is more prominent now than it was back when Yeager developed his addiction.

Those range from within the United States to other countries around the world, demonstrating that there is actual effort being put into keeping these slot machines readily available. There were more than 3,100 slot machines operated by the U.S. Department of Defense as of 2017, and gambling has only become more prominent in recent years.

The justification for those slot machines is the revenue produced from them - over $100 million a year when most recently reported - to fund recreation for service members. Whether it’s the seven casinos within 20 minutes of one military base in Washington state or those located in Germany, Japan and South Korea, gambling opportunities regularly surround our Armed Forces.

Given that fact, there has been legislation introduced pushing to ban these slot machines on overseas military bases. 

New research into gambling addiction among members of the military

After seeing such a rise in problem gambling among the military, innovative research is in motion. The VA treatment service has already found that service members are twice as likely to develop a gambling addiction compared to average citizens, so they are conducting a new survey with results expected in the fall of 2024.

Problem Gambling resources & treatment for the military

With the rise in gambling addiction in the Armed Forces, it’s important that resources are available, and that is where Birches Health comes into play. The treatment provided by Birches is conducted virtually by specialized, licensed clinicians, which can be particularly helpful for service members who need scheduling flexibility and ease of accessibility. 

Every treatment plan from Birches is personalized for each patient to ensure the most beneficial results. There are several ways to get started:

You can also feel free to call 833-483-3838 or email hello@bircheshealth.com to get in contact with the Birches team right away.


SOURCES:

Concerns grow over gambling addiction in the military

Fall In: A Veteran with a Gambling Addiction: Yeager, Dave: 9798889820109: Amazon.com: Books

Slot Machines on U.S. Military Bases Could be Banned - Birches Health | Gambling Addiction Treatment

Problem Gambling and the Military | ncgwg

‘Gambling addiction on steroids’: fears of betting crisis at heart of US military

Military members twice as likely to struggle with gambling: Study.