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      Problem gambling worldwide: An update and systematic review of empirical research (2000–2015)

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          Abstract

          Background and aims

          Problem gambling has been identified as an emergent public health issue, and there is a need to identify gambling trends and to regularly update worldwide gambling prevalence rates. This paper aims to review recent research on adult gambling and problem gambling (since 2000) and then, in the context of a growing liberalization of the gambling market in the European Union, intends to provide a more detailed analysis of adult gambling behavior across European countries.

          Methods

          A systematic literature search was carried out using academic databases, Internet, and governmental websites.

          Results

          Following this search and utilizing exclusion criteria, 69 studies on adult gambling prevalence were identified. These studies demonstrated that there are wide variations in past-year problem gambling rates across different countries in the world (0.12–5.8%) and in Europe (0.12–3.4%). However, it is difficult to directly compare studies due to different methodological procedures, instruments, cut-offs, and time frames. Despite the variability among instruments, some consistent results with regard to demographics were found.

          Discussion and conclusion

          The findings highlight the need for continuous monitoring of problem gambling prevalence rates in order to examine the influence of cultural context on gambling patterns, assess the effectiveness of policies on gambling-related harms, and establish priorities for future research.

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          Most cited references128

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          The South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS): a new instrument for the identification of pathological gamblers

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            Gambling and related mental disorders: a public health analysis.

            This article reviews the prevalence of gambling and related mental disorders from a public health perspective. It traces the expansion of gambling in North America and the psychological, economic, and social consequences for the public's health, and then considers both the costs and benefits of gambling and the history of gambling prevalence research. A public health approach is applied to understanding the epidemiology of gambling-related problems. International prevalence rates are provided and the prevalence of mental disorders that often are comorbid with gambling problems is reviewed. Analysis includes an examination of groups vulnerable to gambling-related disorders and the methodological and conceptual matters that might influence epidemiological research and prevalence rates related to gambling. The major public health problems associated with gambling are considered and recommendations made for public health policy, practice, and research. The enduring value of a public health perspective is that it applies different 'lenses' for understanding gambling behaviour, analysing its benefits and costs, as well as identifying strategies for action. Harvey A. Skinner (160, p. 286)
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              Prevalence of Adolescent Problem Gambling: A Systematic Review of Recent Research

              Previous research has shown that gambling is a popular activity among adolescents. Following a rapid expansion of legalized gambling opportunities and the emergence of new forms of gambling, many researchers have carried out studies on adolescent gambling and problem gambling. The present paper reviews studies that have been conducted worldwide since 2000, and then presents a more detailed picture of adolescent gambling research in Europe, by providing a country-by country analysis. After an extensive search on academic databases and following an exclusion process, 44 studies were identified. The findings showed that 0.2–12.3 % of youth meet criteria for problem gambling, notwithstanding differences among assessment instruments, cut-offs, and timeframes. However, despite this variability, several demographic characteristics were associated with adolescent gambling involvement and problem gambling. It is concluded that a small but significant minority of adolescents have gambling-related problems. Such findings will hopefully encourage more research into youth gambling to further understand the determinants of this phenomenon.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                jba
                JBA
                Journal of Behavioral Addictions
                J Behav Addict
                Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
                2062-5871
                2063-5303
                26 October 2016
                : 5
                : 4
                : 592-613
                Affiliations
                [ 1 ]International Gaming Research Unit, Psychology Department, Nottingham Trent University , Nottingham, United Kingdom
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author: Filipa Calado; International Gaming Research Unit, Psychology Department, Nottingham Trent University, Burton Street, Nottingham NG1 4BU, United Kingdom; Phone: +44 115 941 8418; E-mail: filipa.calado2013@ 123456my.ntu.ac.uk
                Article
                10.1556/2006.5.2016.073
                5370365
                27784180
                15c52c98-76d1-4dd4-a62b-f7fd28a43b5d
                © 2016 The Author(s)

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 98, Pages: 22
                Funding
                Funding sources: No financial support was received for this study.
                Categories
                Review Article

                Evolutionary Biology,Medicine,Psychology,Educational research & Statistics,Social & Behavioral Sciences
                gambling,prevalence,pathological gambling,adult gambling,problem gambling

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