Economic and Social Costs of Problem Gambling
There are several economic and social costs of problem gambling. These impacts are grouped by their nature: positive or negative, economic, social, or labor. The impacts of gambling are both internal and external. Internal impacts relate to individuals and their relationships, while external impacts are broader in scope and affect society/community. In addition to internal costs, external gambling impacts may also include social and economic benefits. Finally, both types of impacts are worth considering for the long term.
Many health professionals have debated the definition of problem gambling, using terms like “at risk,” “compulsive,” and “disordered.” However, one definition remains consistent across all studies: pathological gambling is an addiction characterized by a need to bet large amounts of money on events of chance. It is often associated with a sense of restlessness after the initial excitement of a winning bet ends, and repeated attempts to limit one’s gambling activity.
Gambling can be a fun pastime if it is done responsibly, but it can also be destructive to one’s life. The compulsion to gamble can result in negative emotional and financial consequences. Problem gambling is a widespread problem that affects 6-8 million people in the US alone. People with a gambling problem may lie about their time or money, or spend more time planning their next gambling opportunity. Identifying and admitting to a gambling problem is a vital step to take to restore one’s life.
In the past, economists have analyzed the potential social and economic benefits of expanding gambling activities. However, the results of their work have been mixed. Overall, they found that the economic development impact of gambling is not strong enough to make up for the costs. There is still much to learn about the social and economic benefits of gambling. Nevertheless, it is clear that the benefits are worth pursuing. In this article, we will discuss some of the key factors that should be considered before expanding gambling activities.
While many outsiders consider gambling to be a bad thing, research indicates that gambling actually has many positive social and economic benefits. However, a large number of people are against gambling because they believe that casinos hide their income or avoid paying taxes. Nevertheless, the global gambling market is expected to reach USD 525 billion by 2023, making it an important area for individual countries to monetize. In addition to the economic benefits of gambling, it also creates costs that taxpayers must bear.
The economic costs of gambling are hard to determine, particularly due to the lack of causal relationships. Problem gamblers have a greater risk of suicide than the general population. A Swedish registry study showed an increased risk of completed suicide of 15.1 times. This increased risk is estimated to apply to suicide attempts as well. Approximately five hundred suicide attempts are made by problem gamblers each year, making the number of attempts high. Hence, these attempts constitute a direct cost.
The study included three types of costs. The first type represents direct costs, while the other two are indirect costs. Indirect costs include costs of depression and other mental illnesses. The Czech study also included the costs associated with emotional distress and unemployment. These costs cannot be included twice, however, because they are already accounted for in the costs associated with unemployment. Moreover, the size of the value for the intangible costs varies from country to country.
Social costs of problem gambling
A recent study estimated that the social costs of problem gambling were more than $1.2 billion a year in Wisconsin. The study was based on surveys of participants in Gamblers Anonymous treatment programs. The study also included non-gamblers. The social costs of problem gambling are not directly quantifiable, but they are still substantial. Problem gamblers may spend hundreds of thousands of dollars every year on gambling-related expenses, but the societal costs of problem gambling are even higher.
The study was conducted outside the confines of academic sponsorship to assess the costs of problem gambling. Public administration professors Bill Thompson and Keith Schwer co-authored the study. They claim to be the first to quantify the costs of problem gambling. The researchers calculated that the social cost per problem gambler is between $19,000 and $4.7 million a year. This amount includes lost wages, thefts, and civil and criminal court procedures. The study also included losses to the economy due to employee theft and embezzlement.