Gambling is a form of entertainment that many adults use to relieve stress, but for kids who do not know the dangers of gambling, it could become a problem.
That is what is happening in New York, according to a recent survey which suggested that problem gambling among teens is becoming more and more of a threat.
The survey, which was conducted in New York by the state Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services (OASAS), claimed that questions were asked that target signs of problem gambling to around 5,800 students.
“These findings give us critically important information and insights into the prevalence of problem gambling in New York,” said OASAS Commissioner Karen M. Carpenter-Palumbo. “New Yorkers, young and old, need to understand that gambling is a serious problem when it interferes with a healthy and productive life.”
Among youths, the most frequent activity in those who experienced problem gambling in the past year was playing cards, followed by betting on games of skill such as their own activities, sporting events, dice and lottery games.
The study suggests that it is important to teach parents about how to talk to their children about gambling in order to keep them from having problems with the activity.
“Parents need to understand that gambling may not be just harmless entertainment for their children and be looking for the signs which may indicate a compulsive behavior developing,” Commissioner Carpenter-Palumbo said. “Those signs can include a preoccupation with gambling activity, lying about the activity or stealing in order to get money for gambling.”
Gordon Price, Casino Gambling Web’s expert gaming analyst, said of the study, “With all the money coming into states with the expansion of gambling, a good percentage needs to go to programs designed to teach the community about the possible dangers of gambling, especially to the nation’s youth.”
Extensive studies have showed that gambling problems actually go down in areas where gambling has expanded if programs are instituted to teach the community about the possible perils of gambling.