Problem gambling in early adulthood: a population-based study

Emond, A., Griffiths, M.D. ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524 and Hollén, L., 2022. Problem gambling in early adulthood: a population-based study. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, 20, pp. 754-770. ISSN 1557-1874

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The aims of this study were to investigate stability of problem gambling between 20 and 24 years of age, and the antecedents and consequences of problem gambling at age 20 years. Young adult participants in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) completed computer-administered gambling surveys on paper, or online. Responses to the Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI) were complete for 2624 participants at 20 years, and 1921 participants at 24 years. Responses were categorized into ‘non-problem’ (71–78%), ‘low-risk gambling’ (16–21%), ‘moderate-risk gambling’ (4–5.5%), and ‘problem gambling’ (1–1.5%). The overall frequency of moderate-risk/problem gambling varied little between age 20 and 24 years, and scratch cards, online betting and gambling were the most frequent activities. Problem gamblers at age 20 years had a history of hyperactivity and conduct problems in adolescence, high sensation seeking, and an external locus of control. They were more likely to have mothers who had problems with gambling, reported less parental supervision, and higher social media usage. Moderate-risk/problem gambling at age 20 years was associated with regular cigarette smoking, high levels of illicit drug use, and problematic use of alcohol at age 24 years. A significant minority of young adults (mainly males) showed problem gambling behaviours which appeared to be established by the age of 20 years and were associated with other potentially addictive behaviours.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction
Creators: Emond, A., Griffiths, M.D. and Hollén, L.
Publisher: Springer Science and Business Media LLC
Date: April 2022
Volume: 20
ISSN: 1557-1874
Rights: © The Author(s) 2020. Open Access. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Linda Sullivan
Date Added: 28 Oct 2020 14:18
Last Modified: 21 Mar 2022 11:45

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