Background and aims: Internet gambling is undergoing a massive worldwide expansion. The relationship between the convenience, anonymity, and the 24-hour availability of Internet gambling and problem gambling in young people presents a serious concern. This study explored general gambling behavior, including Internet gambling (with and without money), problem gambling, and risk-approach motivation in a sample of university students aged 18 to 20 years. Methods: University undergraduates (N = 465) in two urban universities completed in-class paper-and-pencil questionnaires concerning Internet gambling, risk taking, and a checklist of the DSM-IV criteria for problem gambling. Results: Overall, 8.0% of participants reported past-year gambling for money on the Internet, with significantly higher rates among males (11.8%) than females (0.6%). Based on DSM-IV criteria, 3.7% of respondents were classified as problem gamblers (i.e., endorsed 3 or more items). There were higher rates of problem gambling among those who had gambled on the Internet, and students who had gambled on the Internet had higher risk-approach scores. Conclusions: The results of this study suggest that students who have gambled on the Internet have greater risk-taking motivation than students who have not gambled online, and those classified as problem gamblers have greater risk-taking motivation than non-gamblers. Results also suggest both higher risk taking scores and classification as a high risk-taker predict online gambling. Gambling on the Internet may be harmful for some individuals; young males, those with high risk-approach motivation, and, most certainly, those already exhibiting problem gambling behaviors.
Authors:Loredana Marchica and Jeffrey L. Derevensky
Background and aims
Personalized feedback interventions (PFI) have shown success as a low-cost, scalable intervention for reducing problematic and excessive consumption of alcohol. Recently, researchers have begun to apply PFI as an intervention method for problematic gambling behaviors. A systematic review of the literature on PFI as an intervention/prevention method for gambling behaviors was performed.
Studies were included if they met the following criteria: the design included both a PFI group and a comparison group, and the interventions focused on gambling prevention and/or reduction. Six relevant studies were found meeting all criteria.
Results revealed that PFI treatment groups showed decreases in a variety of gambling behaviors as compared to control groups, and perceived norms on gambling behaviors significantly decreased after interventions as compared to control groups.
Overall, the research suggests that while PFI applied to gambling is still in its infancy, problematic gamblers appear to benefit from programs incorporating PFIs. Further, PFI may also be used as a promising source of preventative measures for individuals displaying at-risk gambling behaviors. While, evidence is still limited, and additional research needs to be conducted with PFI for gambling problems, the preliminary positive results along with the structure of PFI as a scalable and relatively inexpensive intervention method provides promising support for future studies.
Authors:Hyoun S. Kim, Michael J. A. Wohl, Rina Gupta and Jeffrey Derevensky
Background and aims
The potential link between social casino gaming and online gambling has raised considerable concerns among clinicians, researchers and policy makers. Unfortunately, however, there is a paucity of research examining this potential link, especially among young adults. This represents a significant gap given young adults are frequently exposed to and are players of social casino games.
To better understand the potential link between social casino games and online gambling, we conducted three focus groups (N = 30) at two large Canadian Universities with college students who were avid social media users (who are regularly exposed to social casino games).
Many participants spontaneously mentioned that social casino games were a great opportunity to build gambling skills before playing for real money. Importantly, some participants expressed a belief that there is a direct progression from social casino gaming to online gambling. Conversely, others believed the transition to online gambling depended on a person’s personality, rather than mere exposure to social casino games. While many young adults in our focus groups felt immune to the effects of social casino games, there was a general consensus that social casino games may facilitate the transition to online gambling among younger teenagers (i.e., 12–14 yr olds), due to the ease of accessibility and early exposure.
The results of the present research point to the need for more study on the effects of social casino gambling as well as a discussion concerning regulation of social casino games in order to minimize their potential risks.
Behavioral addictions such as gambling and gaming disorder are significant public health issues that are of increasing importance to policy makers and health care providers. Problem gambling and gaming behaviors have been identified as being associated with externalizing and internalizing problems, with theoretical models suggesting that both conduct problems and depressive symptoms may be significant risk factors in the development of problem gambling and gaming. As such, the purpose of this systematic review is to provide an overview of research identifying the relationship between conduct problems, depressive symptoms and problem gambling and gaming among adolescents and young adults.
Systematic literature searches in accordance with PRISMA guidelines found 71 eligible studies that met the inclusion criteria, 47 for problem gambling, 23 for problem gaming and one for both problem behaviors.
Based on cross-sectional evidence, both problem gambling and gaming are consistently concurrently associated with conduct problems and depressive symptoms. Longitudinal evidence appears to be clearer for conduct problems as a risk factor for problem gambling, and depressive symptoms as a risk factor for problem gaming. However, both risk factors appear to increase the risk for these problem behaviors.
Discussion and Conclusions
Results from the literature review suggest that problem gambling and gaming are associated with the presence of conduct problems and depressive symptoms, with the potential of sharing common etiological factors. Additional research is necessary to confirm these longitudinal relationships with an emphasis on investigating the interaction of both early conduct problems and depressive symptoms.
Authors:John B. Saunders, Wei Hao, Jiang Long, Daniel L. King, Karl Mann, Mira Fauth-Bühler, Hans-Jürgen Rumpf, Henrietta Bowden-Jones, Afarin Rahimi-Movaghar, Thomas Chung, Elda Chan, Norharlina Bahar, Sophia Achab, Hae Kook Lee, Marc Potenza, Nancy Petry, Daniel Spritzer, Atul Ambekar, Jeffrey Derevensky, Mark D. Griffiths, Halley M. Pontes, Daria Kuss, Susumu Higuchi, Satoko Mihara, Sawitri Assangangkornchai, Manoj Sharma, Ahmad El Kashef, Patrick Ip, Michael Farrell, Emanuele Scafato, Natacha Carragher and Vladimir Poznyak
Online gaming has greatly increased in popularity in recent years, and with this has come a multiplicity of problems due to excessive involvement in gaming. Gaming disorder, both online and offline, has been defined for the first time in the draft of 11th revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11). National surveys have shown prevalence rates of gaming disorder/addiction of 10%–15% among young people in several Asian countries and of 1%–10% in their counterparts in some Western countries. Several diseases related to excessive gaming are now recognized, and clinics are being established to respond to individual, family, and community concerns, but many cases remain hidden. Gaming disorder shares many features with addictions due to psychoactive substances and with gambling disorder, and functional neuroimaging shows that similar areas of the brain are activated. Governments and health agencies worldwide are seeking for the effects of online gaming to be addressed, and for preventive approaches to be developed. Central to this effort is a need to delineate the nature of the problem, which is the purpose of the definitions in the draft of ICD-11.