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Health/Functioning Characteristics, Gambling Behaviors, and Gambling-Related Motivations in Adolescents Stratified by Gambling Problem Severity: Findings from a High School Survey

Authors

  • Sarah W. Yip MSc,

    1. Division of Substance Abuse, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, Connecticut Mental Health Center, New Haven, Connecticut
    2. Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom
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  • Rani A. Desai PhD, MPH,

    1. Department of Epidemiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut
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  • Marvin A. Steinberg PhD,

    1. Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling, Guilford, Connecticut
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  • Loreen Rugle PhD,

    1. Problem Gambling Services, Middletown, Connecticut
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  • Dana A. Cavallo PhD,

    1. Division of Substance Abuse, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, Connecticut Mental Health Center, New Haven, Connecticut
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  • Suchitra Krishnan-Sarin PhD,

    1. Division of Substance Abuse, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, Connecticut Mental Health Center, New Haven, Connecticut
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  • Marc N. Potenza MD, PhD

    1. Division of Substance Abuse, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, Connecticut Mental Health Center, New Haven, Connecticut
    2. Child Study Center, Yale University, School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut
    3. Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut
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Ms. Yip, Department of Psychiatry, Warneford Hospital, Oxford, OX3 7JX, UK. E-mail: sarah.yip@psych.ox.ac.uk.

Abstract

In adults, different levels of gambling problem severity are differentially associated with measures of health and general functioning, gambling behaviors, and gambling-related motivations. Here we present data from a survey of 2,484 Connecticut high school students, and investigate the data stratifying by gambling problem severity based on DSM-IV criteria for pathological gambling. Problem/pathological gambling was associated with a range of negative functions; for example, poor academic performance, substance use, dysphoria/depression, and aggression. These findings suggest a need for improved interventions related to adolescent gambling and a need for additional research into the relationship (eg, mediating factors) between gambling and risk and protective behaviors. (Am J Addict 2011;20:495–508)

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