Estimating the prevalence of problem gambling among older adults in Singapore

Abstract

This study examined the prevalence rates of problem gambling among older adults in Singapore. A stratified sampling method was used to select the nationally representative sample of 3010 older adults aged 55 years and above. The survey participants were of varying ethnicities living in the community, including Chinese, Malay, and Indian (and others). A structured questionnaire, including the Canadian Problem Gambling Index, gambling attitudes and behaviors, and demographic information was administered face-to-face at participants' homes, using one of the four language versions preferred by the participants. Among those who had gambled lifetime, 69.7% (or weighted population = 39.2%) gambled in the past 12 months and 2.2% (or weighted population = .9%) met the problem gambling criteria. Individuals with problem gambling were likely to have started gambling at an younger age and to have gambled in activities characterized by continuity and no set money limits. Future research should examine changes in gambling behaviors of older adults over time in non-Western societies.

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