The Costs and Benefits of Gambling

October 31, 2022 by No Comments


This article will look at the costs and benefits of gambling, as well as the impact it has on society. It will also discuss the treatments available for gambling. Gambling can be a self-soothing or social activity, which can make an individual feel better about themselves. Some alternatives to gambling include exercise, nongambling friends, and learning relaxation techniques.

Impacts of gambling on society

Gambling has various effects on society, both positive and negative. While many studies have focused on the economic and personal costs of gambling, the social effects are often overlooked. While some effects are obvious, such as lowered productivity, increased crime, and increased infrastructure costs, others are less apparent but have significant impacts.


The costs of gambling are not only personal, but also societal. Problem gamblers often take extended breaks or spend long hours on the phone or online gambling, consuming valuable employee time and causing workplace problems. According to one study in Quebec, employees with a gambling problem cost their employers up to five hours of lost time every month. If these employees earned $30k annually, this would amount to $5 million in lost wages. In addition, financial losses may occur from employee theft or embezzlement to fund their gambling behavior.


While gambling can be highly addictive, it also has many benefits. It can help people develop a wide variety of skills, including pattern recognition and math. Gambling is also a fun way to interact with others and build social bonds. It also brings in cash, which is great for the local economy. However, gambling can have negative side effects, so it is important to know your limits and make sure you don’t overdo it.


There are many different types of treatments for problem gambling. One type of treatment is known as relapse prevention, and it focuses on developing skills that will help an individual cope with high-risk situations. These situations can be related to interpersonal or environmental discomfort. A tool used to identify high-risk situations is the Inventory of Gambling Situations (IGS). Relapse prevention techniques help an individual learn effective coping strategies in high-risk situations and avoid unhealthy gambling behaviors.

Impacts on families

Regardless of whether or not a person’s gambling problem is self-inflicted, the effects of gambling on a family are often profound. Many families experience a financial crisis as a result of a problem gambler. The family may have to go without essentials like electricity and water, or they may be unable to afford medical care for themselves or their children. Gamblers may also use all their income, even their savings, to support themselves and their gambling habit. Moreover, their spouse will likely feel the financial strain and may withdraw emotionally or physically from the gambling addict.

Impacts on public services

The positive impacts of gambling on public services are well documented, but there are far fewer studies examining the negative impacts. In addition to direct costs, gambling has indirect and intangible costs on the community/society as a whole. Health-related quality of life weights (also known as disability weights) are a useful way to measure the social costs of gambling. These measures also consider the effects of gambling on the gambler’s social networks.