Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Impulsiveness and gambling: from the kindergarten to the casino

Being impulsive as a child is associated with a number of problems later in life including delinquency and dropping out of school and mental-health and addiction problems in adulthood and now a Canadian study of 163 children has suggested that it could also be linked to problem gambling. The children's nursery teachers were interviewed about their inattentiveness, distractibility and hyperactivity and then the children were followed up six years later and asked whether they played cards, bought lottery tickets or gambled with friends. An increase of one point on the scale used to measure impulsiveness in the children at nursery was linked to a 25% increase in gambling involvement by year 6. People who start gambling in adolescence are more likely to have severe gambling problems as adults.

You can find out more about this research at

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