The Social Costs of Gambling


Although there are some benefits to gambling, few studies focus on its negative impact on society. Most studies measure the economic costs of gambling rather than its social impact. According to Williams et al., social costs of gambling include: harming someone while benefiting no one; negative effects on the economy, tourism, and small businesses. However, this debate is not limited to these factors. A few other issues are worth considering as well. Here are some ways to make sense of the social costs of gambling.

Impacts of gambling on health

There is no standardized measurement of the effects of gambling on health, but studies that use the SGHS (standardized global harm score) approach have demonstrated comparable accuracy. Despite their limitations, these models provide useful insights about the health consequences of gambling, which include decreased mental and physical wellbeing and lower life satisfaction. The SGHS methodology is particularly useful for identifying the disproportionate harm caused by problem, excessive, and risky gambling.

Impacts of gambling on employment

The impact of problem gambling on employment is widely known. A large number of problem gamblers are out of work for a month or more. Often, their lack of employment is not directly related to their gambling, but the overall level of unemployment is higher than that of their peers. Problem gamblers may also be more likely to engage in illicit activities or to steal, resulting in reduced productivity and increased risk of stealing from employers. While the long-term impact of gambling on employment is unknown, it is still important to understand the positive and negative effects of gambling.

Impacts of gambling on tourism

There are both positive and negative impacts of legalized gambling on a tourism industry. On the one hand, casinos can increase tourism by attracting more tourists, increasing local revenue and recognition, and attracting potential investors. On the other hand, casinos can also lead to negative impacts of tourism. Let’s take a look at some of these impacts. For one thing, legalized gambling increases local employment. Many communities benefit from the additional revenue casinos bring, and they also improve local amenities.

Impacts of gambling on small businesses

The impacts of gambling on small businesses are not limited to the entertainment industry. The effects of legalized gambling on small businesses also extend to the retail sector. Small businesses, in particular, are likely to experience difficulties in maintaining their workforce and shop rents due to increased competition from casinos. In some states, the impact of gambling on small businesses may even be greater than in others. The following are some of the factors to consider when analyzing the impact of gambling on small businesses.

Treatments for problem gambling

Psychological interventions are available to treat problem gambling. The most common types of interventions include cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), motivational interviewing, and cognitive restructuring. Both have moderate to high effect sizes and incorporate cognitive elements such as graded exposure. Individual and group therapy may be more effective for some gamblers than others. This article will discuss some of the most common types of psychotherapy for problem gambling and how to select the most appropriate one for each individual.