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Gambling and Problem Behavior Among 14- to 16-Year-Old Boys and Girls in Finland

Tiina Räsänen, Tomi Lintonen, Anne Konu


The aim of this study is to examine the associations between problem behavior and gambling frequency among eighth- and ninth-grade boys and girls (N = 101,167). Data were obtained from the cross-sectional School Health Promotion Study. Outcome measures were adolescents' truancy, bullying, delinquency, and substance use. Polychotomous logistic regression analyses were used to study the relationship between gambling frequency and risk behaviors in a total sample, as well as separately for boys and girls. In 2010, 62% of the adolescents had gambled during the previous year, and in 2011, 61% of the adolescents had done so. Engaging in different levels of truancy, bullying, delinquency, and substance abuse were associated with higher risks for frequent gambling. Similar patterns of associations were found among boys and girls. Adolescents who engaged in gambling on a daily or weekly basis were the most vulnerable group for problem behavior. However, even infrequent gambling was associated with different problem behaviors.


gambling; adolescence; problem behavior

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