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Teens and Gambling

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Teens don't seem to fit the images of someone slumped at a slot machine, or desperately chasing losses at a blackjack table. But with increased Internet gambling, sports gambling and other outlets, teens are often at risk for this behavior too.

Stanley R. Bier, Ph.D.
info@gamblingproblemkc.com
South Office: 8301 State Line Road Suite 116 Kansas City, Mo. 64114 • Phone 816-361-7400 and Fax 816-361-8180
North Office: 2029 Buchanan North Kansas City Mo. 64116 • Phone 816-474-7322 and Fax 816-474-6202

© Stanley R. Bier, Ph.D. •


A Self-Test for Teens

Ask yourself the following questions:

1. Do your friends gamble a lot?

2. Do you gamble at school?

3. Have you ever stayed away from school or work to gamble?

4. Is gambling more important than school or work?

5. Do you often spend your free time involved in gambling activities such as poker, sports betting, dice, etc.?

6. Do you find gambling to be the most exciting activity you do?

7. When you are gambling, do you tend to lose track of time and forget about everything else?

8. Do you often daydream about gambling?

9. Do you feel your friends are en- of you when you win money at gambling and that you get extra attention because of gambling?

10. When you do win, do you want to return to gamble as soon as possible because you believe that you will continue winning?

11. When you lose, do you feel you must bet as soon as possible to win back your losses?

12. Do you often gamble with money you originally intended to use for other things—like lunch clothing, tapes/CDs, etc.?

13. Do you ever "borrow" money to gamble?

14. Have you ever sold a favorite possession or something very special to you to get money to gamble or pay a gambling debt?

15. Do you try to prevent your family and friends from knowing how much and how often you gamble?

16. Do you ever lie about your gambling? For example, do you ever tell people that you did not gamble or that you won money gambling when in fact you had lost money or possessions?

17. Do you get into arguments with your parents because of gambling or with your friends over a gambling activity?

18. Do you feel depressed or lose sleep or feel guilty because you lost money gambling?

19. Have you ever thought of suicide as a way of solving your problems?

20. Does one or both of your parents do a lot of gambling?

Self-scoring guide:
3- 4 yes: Time to wonder if your gambling is getting out of hand.

5- 7 yes: You are losing control over your gambling. More than 7 yes: Seek appropriate help for what is clearly a problem.