Gambling Prevention Program Among Children

Abstract

Gambling becomes a more frequent activity among children as they have an easy access to the world of the games. In the same time children are at a higher risk for developing problem and/or pathological gambling having erroneous information about how games of chance and games of skill work. The purpose of the study was to compare the influence of specific primary prevention with rational emotive education (REE) on the subjects’ knowledge about games. The experimental design randomly assigned children (N = 81, age 12–13, 37 male and 44 female) into three groups: 1. control, 2. specific information about games using the interactive software “Amazing Chateau”, and 3. REE. All children completed a questionnaire with 38 items at the beginning of the study and after 10 weekly interventional meetings. Each item had three answering options, children choosing only one correct answer. Findings indicated that the use of the software significantly improved subjects’ knowledge about gambling and corrected their information about how games work. The results of the study confirmed that using specific primary prevention tools for changing erroneous conceptions about games is more efficient than using only REE. The implications of these results for the prevention of gambling problems especially in schools are discussed.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

References

  1. Baer, J. S., MacLean, M. G., & Marlatt, G. A. (1998). Linking etiology, prevention, and treatment for adolescent alcohol use: towards a better match. In R. Jessor (Ed.), New perspectives on adolescent risk behaviors (pp. 182–220). Boston, MA: Cambridge University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  2. Becoña, E. (2009). Gambling in Spain. In G. Meyer, T. Hayer, & M. D. Griffiths (Eds.), Problem Gaming in Europe: Challenges, Prevention, and Interventions. New York: Springer.

    Google Scholar 

  3. Bernard, E. M. (2004). Emotional resilience in children: Implications for Rational Emotive Education. Romanian Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychotherapies, 4, 39–52.

    Google Scholar 

  4. David, D. (2007). Tratat de psihoterapii cognitiv-comportamentale [Handbook of cognitive-behavioral psychotherapies]. Iaşi: Polirom.

    Google Scholar 

  5. Derevensky, J., & Gupta, R. (2005). Gambling problems in youth: Theoretical and applied perspective. Berlin: Springer.

  6. Derevensky, J., & Gupta, R. (2006). Measuring gambling problems amongst adolescents: Current status and future directions. International Gambling Studies, 6(2), 201–215.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Dickson, L., & Derevensky, J. (2006). Preventing adolescent problem gambling: Implications for school psychology. Canadian Journal of School Psychology, 21(1/2), 59–72.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Dickson, L., Derevensky, J., & Gupta, R. (2008). Youth gambling problems: An examination of risk and protective factors. International Gambling Studies, 8(1), 25–47.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Ferland, F., Ladouceur, R., & Vitaro, F. (2002). Prevention of problem gambling: Modifying misconception and increasing knowledge. Journal of Gambling Studies, 18, 19–30.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Fisher, S. (1999). A prevalence study of gambling and problem gambling in British adolescents. Addiction Research, 7, 509–538.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Griffiths, M. D. (2003). Problem gambling. The Psychologist: Bulletin of the British Psychological Society, 16, 582–584.

    Google Scholar 

  12. Griffiths, M. D. (2005). Gambling and crime in the workplace: Will it be a growing problem? Justice of the Peace, 169, 188–189.

    Google Scholar 

  13. Griffiths, M. D. (2009). Problem gambling in Europe: An overview. UK: International Gaming. Research Unit, Division of Psychology, Apex Communications, Nottingham Trent University.

  14. Griffiths, M. D., & Wood, R. T. A. (2000). Risk factors in adolescence: The case of gambling, video-game playing and the internet. Journal of Gambling Studies, 16, 199–225.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  15. Hayer, T., Griffiths, M. & Meyer, G. (2005). Gambling. In T. P. Gullotta, & G. R. Adams (Eds.), Handbook of adolescent behavioral problems: Evidence-based approaches to prevention and treatment (pp. 467–486). Berlin: Springer.

  16. Hurrelmann, K., Schmidt, L., & Kähnert, H. (2003). Konsum von Glücksspielen bei Kindern und Jugendlichen—Verbreitung und Prävention [Participation in gambling of children and adolescents—Prevalence and prevention]. Düsseldorf: Ministerium für Gesundheit, Soziales, Frauen und Familie des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen.

    Google Scholar 

  17. Ilkas, H. & Aho, P. (2006). Nuorten rahapelaaminen. 12–17—vuotiaiden nuorten rahapelaaminen ja peliongelmat–puhelinhaastattelu. Sosiaali- ja terveysministeriö. Taloustutkimus Oy. Joulukuu 2006. [Adolescence gambling. Gambling and gambling problems among adolescence of 12–17 years—telephone survey. Ministry of Social and Health, Taloustutkimus Ltd, December 2006].

  18. International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors. (2004a). The amazing château [CD-ROM]. Montreal, QC: McGill University.

    Google Scholar 

  19. International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors. (2004b). Hooked city [CD-ROM] (pp. 15–20). Montreal, QC: McGill University.

    Google Scholar 

  20. Jaakkola, T. (2009). Finland. In G. Meyer, T. Hayer, & M. Griffiths (Eds.), Problem gambling in Europe: Challenges, prevention, and interventions (pp. 53–70). New York: Springer. doi:10.1007/978-0-387-09486-1.

  21. Johansson, A., & Götestam, K. G. (2003). Gambling and problematic gambling with money among Norwegian youth (12–18 years). Nordic Journal of Psychiatry, 57, 317321.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Ladouceur, R., Ferland, F., Roy, C., Pelletier, O., Bussieres, E. L., & Auclair, A. (2004). Prévention du jeu excessif chez les adolescents : une approche cognitive. Journal de Thérapie Comportementale et Cognitive, 14(3), 124–130.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Lupu, V., & Iftene, F. (2009). The impact of rational emotive behavior education on anxiety in teenagers. Journal of Cognitive and Behavioral Psychotherapies, 9(1), 95–105.

    Google Scholar 

  24. Lupu, V., Todirita, I. R. (2010). Problem gambling in Romania: Updates. Paper presented at the 8th European conference on gambling studies and policy issues, Vienna, Austria. Retrieved from http://www.easg.org/media/file/vienna2010/presentations/Thursday/1600/P3/2_Viorel_Lupu_Izabela_Ramona_Todirita.pdf.

  25. Magoon, M., Gupta, R., & Derevensky, J. (2007). Gambling among youth in detention centers. Journal for Juvenile Justice and Detention Services, 21, 17–30.

    Google Scholar 

  26. Moodie, C., & Finnigan, F. (2006). Prevalence and correlates of youth gambling in Scotland. Addiction Research and Theory, 14, 365–385.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. Olason, D., & Gretarsson, S. J. (2009). Gambling in Germany. In G. Meyer, T. Hayer, & M. D. Griffiths (Eds.), Problem gaming in Europe: Challenges, prevention, and interventions. New York: Springer.

    Google Scholar 

  28. Olason, D. T., Skarphedinsson, G. J., Jonsdottir, J. E., Mikaelsson, M., & Gretarsson, S. J. (2006). Prevalence estimates of gambling and problem gambling among 13- to 15-year-old adolescents in Reykjavík: An examination of correlates of problem gambling and different accessibility to electronic gambling machines in Iceland. Journal of Gambling Issues, 18, 39–56.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  29. Popa, S. (2004). Influenţa convingerilor iraţionale asupra performanţelor şcolare. [The influence of irrational beliefs on academic performances] Studii şi cercetări din domeniul ştiinţelor socio-umane. Academia Română, DCSU. Cluj-Napoca: Argonaut.

  30. Rossow, I. & Hansen, M. (2003). Underholdning med bismak. Ungdom og pengespil [Entertainment with an after-taste. Money gambling among youths]. Report no. 1/03. Norsk Institut for forskning om oppvekst, velferd og aldring.

  31. Skokauskas, N., & Satkeviciute, R. (2007). Adolescent pathological gambling in Kaunas, Lithuania. Nordic Journal of Psychiatry, 61, 86–91.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  32. Skokauskas, N., Satkeviciute, R., Burba, B., & Rutkauskiene, I. (2005). Gambling among adolescents in Kaunas. Lithuanian General Practitioner, 5(9), 11–15.

    Google Scholar 

  33. Wood, R. T. A., & Griffiths, M. D. (1998). The acquisition, development and maintenance of lottery and scratchcard gambling in adolescence. Journal of Adolescence, 21, 265–273.

    PubMed  Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Acknowledgments

We would like to thank Prof. Jeffrey Derevensky from the Faculty of Education, Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, Quebec, Canada for his support and agreement for using the “Amazing Chateau” and “Hooked City” software designed by the International Centre for Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors. We would like to thank Stefania Popa, Gheorghe Berar and Ioan Bilc for their help in different phases of this study.

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Izabela Ramona Todirita.

Appendix

Appendix

Questionnaire of knowledge about gaming and gambling (International Centre of Youth Gambling Problems and High-Risk Behaviors 2004a, b, translated and adapted by Lupu and Todirita 2010).

The safest way to make lots of money fast is:

  1. (a)

    By gambling;

  2. (b)

    By playing the stock market;

  3. (c)

    There is no safe way to make lots of money fast.

If you spend 3 Romanian Lei on a scratch card and you win a free card, how much have you actually made?

  1. (a)

    Lose 3 Romanian Lei;

  2. (b)

    3 Romanian Lei;

  3. (c)

    Nothing.

Gambling should only be engaged in:

  1. (a)

    If you can afford to lose the money;

  2. (b)

    When you need to make money fast;

  3. (c)

    If you have a sure strategy to win.

When playing a gambling game, you can control:

  1. (a)

    The final outcome;

  2. (b)

    The way the game is going but not the final result;

  3. (c)

    Nothing.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Todirita, I.R., Lupu, V. Gambling Prevention Program Among Children. J Gambl Stud 29, 161–169 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10899-012-9293-1

Download citation

Keywords

  • Prevention
  • Gambling
  • Children
  • Software
  • Rational emotive education