For Educators and Counselors
Majoring in wagering?
If they're not smoking, drinking, or using drugs, what's the big deal? With the increasing availability, accessibility, and acceptability of gambling, more young people are gambling than ever. What may seem like harmless fun can actually develop into a serious problem for some people. As educators or counselors, you play an important role in the prevention of problem behaviors among your students.
Connecting the Dots (click on image to enlarge)
Three key points about youth gambling:
- Gambling is not a safe alternative to alcohol or drug use. Many people think that poker among friends is totally safe because young people are not drinking or smoking. The truth is, while most people don't have problems when they gamble, more young people are developing problems with gambling. Consequences of problem gambling include more than money lost. Depression, social withdrawal, and school dropout are just a few of the consequences of a gambling problem.
- Many teens already have gambling problems. It may only be a harmless bet of a dollar or two, but it can become a lot more serious. An Oregon study showed that one in every 25 teens (4%) has a gambling problem. An additional 15% are at risk for developing a gambling problem.
- Teens are only a few years away from being adults who can gamble legally. Honest education about gambling is important to preparing young people to make responsible choices.
How we can support you
Problem gambling prevention efforts are meant to supplement your current classroom activities, not to add more work for you! Here are some resources we can offer you: