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Senior Gambling FactsFacts About Problem Gambling And Older Adults

  • Problem Gambling among older adults may have devastating results on lives, including loss of a lifetime of saved income and suicide.
  • Older adults now form the largest group of annual visitors to Los Vegas.
    The Los Vegas Convention and Visitors’ Authority
  • Between 1975 and 1998, the over 65 age group experienced the greatest increase in gambling, both for lifetime (from 35% to 80%) and for past-year (from 23% to 50%).
    Gambling Impact and Behavior Study, 1999
  • A study by the Pennsylvania State College of Medicine and the University of Pennsylvania found that of 843 senior citizens randomly surveyed, 70 percent had participated in some gambling activity in the last year. Of those, about 11 percent could be considered at-risk gamblers, which means they put down more than $100 on a single bet—more than they could afford to lose, or both.
    “Jackpots Hard to Resist for Some Elderly” - July 27, 2007 

How can you determine if an older adult in your life is a problem gambler?

What Resources are Available?

National Problem Gambling Help Line
(800) 522-4700

The National Problem Gambling Help Line provides help to people with gambling problems and their families. Callers receive confidential, professional service from trained counselors. The line operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is free of charge.

Indiana Help Line
(800) 994-8448

Gambling Recovery Ministries
(812) 926-1052

Gamblers Anonymous (GA)

Gam-Anon: A peer-led support group, Gam-Anon provides a supportive environment for the spouses, relatives, or close friends of- problem gamblers to share their experiences. There is no membership fee.  A list of local meetings is available by calling the above Problem Gambling Help Lines.