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This year's World Cup tournament has been both good and bad for China. Betting has been intense, raising tax revenues for the government there, but along with that has come a surge in the number of suicides reported by medical experts as game-related.
The opening day of the FIFA World Cup tournament saw about 150 million Yuan in betting in China, according to the National Sports Lottery Center. It continued on from there, with more and more being placed as the games progressed. Mirroring the rising number of bets, though, has been numbers of suicides and deaths.
Obsessive watching, over-betting, sleep deprivation (due to time zone differences from game play), and other issues are contributing factors, say experts.
Several companies in China have issued health warnings to their employees and created protocols to maintain mental health during the World Cup. One airline instituted spot mental and physical health checks on pilots and stewardesses to combat the issue.
News reports of suicides by wives being ignored by husbands due to the games, of over-betting leading to suicide, and more have been heavy in Chinese media.
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