Gambling addiction is becoming a more and more prevalent problem in Canadian society. As such, researchers across the country are trying to determine the causes of problem gambling in order to come up with effective ways to deal with the issue. A recent study has concluded that scratchcards may be to blame, acting as a sort of ‘gateway drug’ into the world of gambling.
According to researchers at McGill University, the prevalence of problem gambling is greater in children than it is in adults, as adults are able to set responsible gaming limits. One of the ways in which children are normally encouraged to gamble at an early age by receiving scratchcards for birthday and Christmas presents.
It is especially harmful for children who win while playing scratchcards that were gifted to them. While the immediate gratification is pleasant, the long term sees children developing unhealthy attitudes towards gambling.
Over Christmas holidays, provincial lotteries worked hard to discourage parents from buying lottery tickets for their children. The British Columbia Lottery Commission was especially active in regards to the cause. Parents can maintain the same sense of responsibility all year ‘round by refraining from providing lottery tickets as gifts to their children and doing their best not to expose them to gambling at an early age.