J Med Assoc Thai 2012; 95 (6):21

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Consequences and Associated Factors of Youth Gambling
Apinuntavech S Mail, Viwatwongkasem C , Tipayamongkholgul M , Wichaidit W , Sangthong R

Objective: To examine gambling behaviors, consequences and its associated factors among Thai youths.
Material and Method: A cross-sectional survey of 1,694 students from Matthayom 1 (grade 7) to university undergraduate level was conducted using a self-administered questionnaire. Questionnaire items consisted of socio-economic characteristics, health behaviors, attitudes towards gambling and consequences of gambling. Factors associated with gambling experience were identified by multivariate logistic regression.
Results: Approximately 20% of youth gambling was reported. Gamblers had higher proportion of males, studying in vocational schools and lower GPA and history of smoking and alcohol consumption. Card games were the most common type of gambling, followed by football-betting. Approximately 10% of the gamblers potentially had pathological gambling. Factors positively associated with gambling included having friends (adjusted OR = 4.82) and relatives (adjusted OR = 2.48) who gambled. Having a GPA > 3.0 was negatively associated with gambling (adjusted OR = 0.58). The present study reported negative consequences of gambling including feeling of guilt, perception of poorer health and depression or insomnia after losing.
Conclusion: Gambling prevention program should be developed and focused on student with poor study performance and wrecked relationships in family. Also, a surveillance system for health risk behaviors among youth in school and community should be established by the participation of multiple organizations.

Keywords: Gamble, Pathological gambling, Youth, Consequence

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