The legal age for gambling is usually 18 or 21. So you might think that you shouldn’t worry about gambling addiction in children, but you’d be surprised at how high the prevalence of gambling addiction in children and young people is due to mobile games.
Many games that you may think are child-friendly may actually be encouraging gambling. One of the main reasons why children gamble is to escape from their daily lives. This can be due to school stress or tension at home. When they gamble, their brain releases dopamine, which makes them happy, and they become addicted to it. And when it’s too late, it can be hard for them to stop. So today we’re going to talk about why it’s so important to protect your children from gambling and what you can do.
Nowadays, with the development of gambling, children are confronted with many types of gambling on the internet. Whether it’s crypto gambling, lotteries or classic gambling games. There will be games that will appeal to every young person as well as adults. Protecting children from these and preventing them from spending all their time there is very important and is the responsibility of adults.
How Kids Become Addicted to Gambling
For children, the step before gambling is mobile games. They may first become addicted to mobile games and then start gambling. The easy accessibility of the internet and phones allows children to play the games they want anywhere. This type of game does not require much skill from the players and is based on luck, so it is easy to keep children’s interest fresh.
The rewards of these online games are innocent at first, like candies or pets that are useful in the game. The problem starts when these rewards arrive, as such rewards give children the same rush that gamblers experience. Research shows that a neurotransmitter in the brain called dopamine can increase in response to excitement and gambling activity.
In addition, advertisements, movies or TV shows on the internet or on television can also encourage children to gamble.
After phone games, they can also gamble with certain card games or other forms of gambling such as scratch cards and lottery tickets. Although these may seem innocent compared to other forms of gambling, they can go further and start gambling and spending money on horse racing and other sports.
Another thing to note is that video games are very similar to online gambling. This similarity can lead children to think that they only need to improve themselves through gambling and they may unconsciously try to make money this way.
Nowadays, with crypto and blockchain technology attracting everyone’s attention, children are also looking for ways to make money online or multiply their money. But most of them don’t act responsibly and don’t have much knowledge, so they just spend their money.
How to Prevent Gambling Addiction in Children
Explain The Inner Face of Gambling:
Since children are curious to learn new things, you can talk to them about gambling from the inside. Children begin to think abstractly around the age of 12, so you can talk about the irrationality of gambling in terms they can understand. It will be more likely to stick in their minds if you give them examples to compare and contrast. For example, you can talk about how the odds of winning the lottery are equivalent to the odds of being struck by lightning in your lifetime. Such a striking example will help your child to perceive the reality of the situation.
Be A Good Role Model:
Children may think that this is normal if they see people gambling at home all the time. For example, if parents gamble and don’t hide it from their children, children will want to gamble later in life because they see it from their parents and think it is normal. Children will want to imitate their closest role models and may see gambling as fun and a way to make money.
Set Some Rules:
Preventing gambling addiction in children can be done by setting some rules about internet use. If you set the rules together with your children, they will be more likely to follow these rules.
Recognize the Symptoms of Gambling Addiction:
As we mentioned earlier, there are many reasons why children may want to gamble. A stressful day at school or a fight with a parent at home can trigger them. Your role as a responsible parent is to monitor your child’s mental state and be aware of the signals. If you pay attention to these, you can recognize gambling problems before they start. You can also find other hobbies and try to reduce your child’s stress.
As a result, it is important to prevent children from becoming addicted to gambling because they have not yet reached adulthood and may make irresponsible decisions, be easily scammed or meet bad people on the internet. Gambling addiction is something that needs to be recognized and prevented immediately. By communicating clearly with your children, you can recognize these signals and prevent gambling addiction.