Dr Michael Carr-Gregg
Teenagers have many opportunities to gamble. Smartphones and tablets allow young people gamble at any time, day or night. Some children start to gamble very young, some as young as ten. By the age of fifteen, most children have gambled in one form or another.
Unfortunately, the internet exposes children to gambling well before they are legally allowed to gamble. There are thousands of online gambling websites, which children can easily access and use without money via smartphones or Facebook apps. There are also many video games for children that contain gambling themes and content.
It is important to explain the risks of gambling to your child and how it works so they understand the consequences. In Australia, gambling is being normalised through sport with sports betting being promoted at sporting events.
Gambling and gambling-like experiences are widespread amongst children. Gambling advertisements portray an image that gambling is fun and exciting as well as a quick and easy way to get rich. Some teenagers view gambling as a good social activity due to the use of chat and messaging encouraging them to play with friends, share stories and get others to place bets.