Costs of Problem Gambling


Several cost factors affect the cost of problem gambling, including costs associated with problem gambling and the costs to society. These costs include both short and long-term effects. While the cost of gambling may be costly to the individual, the costs incurred by society and communities are the most visible. External costs/benefits can be monetary or non-monetary, and can be long-term or general. Although these costs are often unseen, they do exist.

Social acceptability

The social acceptability of gambling is an important measure of the behavior of people who gamble. While most people gamble responsibly, a small subgroup develops harmful gambling habits. The consequences of problematic gambling include relationship, economic, and health problems. According to research from McGill University and the National Council on Problem Gambling, the holiday season is a good time to educate others about the dangers of gambling. The following are some ways in which social acceptability of gambling can be improved.


While the social costs of gambling are obvious, they are also difficult to measure, both for the individual and the society at large. Problem gambling is associated with financial losses and cases of embezzlement, while the psychic costs are more difficult to quantify. Psychological costs, such as the damage gambling causes to people’s health, are harder to measure, although they do exist. The best informants for assessing gambling costs are those involved in gambling treatment and counselling.

Health impacts

Gambling has both positive and negative health impacts. These effects may range from direct harms to indirect effects through a stronger community economy. Problem gambling may increase stress, increase social isolation, and reduce physical activity. Health effects can range from direct effects on an individual’s physical health to indirect effects on their relationships. However, it is not clear how much gambling affects individuals’ health. The following are some of the positive and negative health impacts of gambling.

Costs of problem gambling

There are many costs associated with problem gambling. Employees who have problem gambling habits may take extended lunch breaks or spend a significant amount of time on the phone or online. They may also be absent from work due to crises. In fact, researchers in Quebec found that problem gambling costs their employers as much as five hours in lost wages each month. This amount equates to about $5 million in lost wages for a worker making $30k per year. Other costs include embezzlement and employee theft, which may fund problem gambling behavior.

Costs to businesses

The social and economic costs of gambling are significant, but their precise monetary value is difficult to determine. A growing body of research examines the costs of gambling by identifying the externalities associated with problem gambling, crime, arrests, and bankruptcy. Estimates of these costs vary widely, and differ from study to study due to the challenges of measurement. The gross impact study method is an imperfect way to measure costs associated with gambling.

Costs to society

There has been a great deal of research on the economic benefits of gambling, but what are the societal costs? In the past, studies have focused mainly on the economic benefits. Now, however, researchers are examining social costs of gambling. Social costs can’t be quantified in monetary terms, but they do have an impact on society. Here, we look at the costs of gambling in three different levels: personal, interpersonal, and community.