Does Gambling Identity Predict Unique Variance in Negative Gambling-Related Outcomes: An Examination of Direct and Interactive Associations

Abstract

Research from other addiction-related domains have reported identity-related constructs to be positively associated with substance use-related outcomes (e.g., frequency, quantity, and/or problems). Moreover, substance use identity has also been found to be predictive of unique variance in substance use-related outcomes. Given the similarities between substance use and behavioral addictions, it may also be the case that gambling identity is predictive of unique variance in negative gambling-related outcomes (e.g., frequency, expenditure, and gambling problem severity). The current study was conducted to examine whether gambling identity was predictive of negative gambling-related outcomes above and beyond the variance explained by other known risk factors of problem gambling (e.g., motives, social norms, and protective behavioral strategy [PBS] use). Moreover, gambling identity was examined as a moderator of the relationship between known risk factors of problem gambling and negative gambling-related outcomes. The current online study consisted of 270 U.S. participants who were predominantly male (90%), White (82%) and 33 years of age. The results from the negative binomial regression analyses indicated that gambling identity was predictive of unique variance in all of the negative gambling-related outcomes assessed. Moreover, gambling identity was found to moderate the relationship between motives, social norms, and PBS use in the prediction of negative gambling-related outcomes. Taken together, the results from the current study replicate and extend the extant body of gambling research and are used to highlight the importance of assessing gambling identity in future studies.

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Acknowledgements

Manuscript preparation and funding for the study was supported by Grants from the NIH (T32AA018108 [Montes; PI McCrady]; K01AA026309 [PI: Montes]). The content is solely the responsibility of the author and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH.

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Correspondence to Kevin S. Montes.

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Montes, K.S. Does Gambling Identity Predict Unique Variance in Negative Gambling-Related Outcomes: An Examination of Direct and Interactive Associations. J Gambl Stud 36, 1361–1377 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10899-019-09885-6

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Keywords

  • Gambling identity
  • Motives
  • Norms
  • Protective behavioral strategies
  • Gambling-related outcomes