Online Gambling and Problem Gambling

Online Gamling

Online gambling, like offline gambling, can lead to problems of addiction. It can cause many terrible things: loss of a job, financial hardship, family problems, participation in illegal activities, and mental health issues. It is important to recognize the signs and symptoms of problem gambling in order to seek help. You can take a free, anonymous online assessment from GambleAware, a charity that offers confidential help and support to people with gambling issues.

There are several different types of gambling available on the Internet, from simulated video games to online poker to sports betting. Some sites even offer practice games for people who want to try out the gambling experience without risking real money. In addition to these ‘practice’ sites, some online casinos allow users to place wagers with credit cards. These sites are attracting a new generation of gamblers, especially adolescents and young adults who have spent most of their lives in an era of electronic video games. These players are attracted by the colourful, fast-paced nature of the games and the ability to win money or prizes.

Compared to nonproblem gamblers, online at-risk and problem gamblers spend more money on gambling, have higher levels of household debt, and have longer session durations (Barrault & Varescon, 2013b; Gainsbury et al., 2014b). They are also more likely to engage in risk behaviour such as using and misusing substances both while gambling and outside of their gambling involvement (Dowling et al., 2015; Kairouz et al., 2012; Mihaylova et al., 2013).

Within the selected articles, individual and relational factors have been explored most extensively. High impulsivity has been identified as a major correlate with gambling problems, while dysfunctional personality characteristics have also been found to be related to problem gambling. In contrast, contextual variables have been scarcely investigated. However, studies of university contexts indicate that this environment may increase the likelihood of gambling among students, as reported by Mihaylova et al., 2013. Finally, gender differences have been observed, with women being more prone to become online problematic gamblers compared to men. This is possibly due to the fact that females have a greater tendency to engage in behavioural risk-taking, as reported by Edgren et al., 2017. However, this finding is not consistent with the findings of Gainsbury et al., 2017, who found that chasing losses is more prevalent in females than in males. Thus, further research is required to explore these factors in more depth. This paper aims to contribute to this. In particular, longitudinal and cross-sectional studies are recommended for future research. Moreover, the size of the sample and the methodological processing of the studies are also critical elements that should be considered. Using nonrepresentative samples can compromise the quality of the data and should be avoided. Also, a clear definition of the term ‘gambling’ is necessary.