Public Health Impacts of Gambling


There are many different perspectives on the topic of gambling. This article explores both complementary and conflicting perspectives in an effort to provide a conceptual framework for the topic. The aim is to promote a better understanding of gambling from a public health perspective. This paper considers the legal age for gambling, costs, and benefits of gambling. The debate will continue in a future article. Until then, you can read the first three chapters in this collection for a general understanding of gambling.


There are three broad categories of impacts from gambling: personal, interpersonal, and societal. Personal impacts are non-monetary; interpersonal impacts include the benefits and costs of problem gambling, as well as the impact on other industries. Societal impacts, on the other hand, are primarily monetary and include the costs and benefits related to general economic activity. These three categories include the following:


The Costs of Gambling study included three categories of societal costs: direct, indirect, and social. Direct costs are those incurred due to gambling-related problems. These include medical resources, time lost from work, and other costs incurred by the gambler. These costs were valued at market prices. The second category includes non-medical resources. Non-medical resources are those that result from gambling-related problems but do not involve the use of medical services.


The benefits of gambling extend beyond the obvious enjoyment it provides. The mental exercise involved in gambling helps people with attention disorders, improves memory, and trains players to concentrate for long periods of time. In addition, gambling requires players to use their critical thinking and math skills, and helps people develop new skills. Gambling also provides a social outlet and helps people learn new skills. Gambling is an excellent way to spend time with friends and family, as players often gather to play games together and beat the house edge.

Legal age

Gambling laws vary from country to country, but generally, it is considered to be illegal for people under 18 years old to place bets and participate in online casino games. This is true of both land-based casinos and online gambling. However, some countries allow underage gamblers to play online. For this reason, it is wise to consult the local gambling laws before participating in online gambling. Here are some examples of legal gambling age in some countries.

Impacts on small businesses

The introduction of gambling has increased economic activity in the community, with increases in local economy the most significant in smaller towns. However, the effects of gambling have also been associated with cannibalization, in which the new industry substitutes for the old, while the latter in turn is not entirely replaced. Therefore, it is difficult to determine the economic impacts of gambling on a particular sector. However, the impact on gambling is different for different sectors, with a study by Siegel and Anders finding that it has largely harmed the industries that are closest to the consumer.


Effective school-based interventions for prevention of problem gambling include educational programs that target children’s perceptions of gambling. These programs focus on improving accurate knowledge of gambling odds and modifying maladaptive gambling cognitions. The effectiveness of these programs has not been proven in a controlled trial, and further studies are needed to examine their long-term effects. However, they are effective in raising awareness about problem gambling and reducing misconceptions. Prevention of gambling interventions can reduce youth risk and help them develop coping mechanisms for the inevitable problems that accompany gambling.