The experience of high frequency gambling behaviour of older adult females in the United Kingdom: an interpretative phenomenological analysis

Abstract

The prevalence of older adult female gambling participation and gambling disorder is increasing in the UK, and there is a paucity of published research available to understand possible risk factors for frequent gambling in this demographic. The aim of the current study was to identify and explore motivations and patterns of gambling behaviour in high frequency older adult female gamblers in the UK, from the perspective of individual and in the context of their experience of aging. Ten UK older adult female high frequency gamblers were recruited via stratified purposive sampling, with a mean age of 70.4 years. Data was collected via semi-structured interviews, and was analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Three core themes representative of the experience of this phenomenon emerged from the transcripts including: Filling Voids, Emotional Escape and Overspending. The present study has provided a contextualised understanding of motivating factors and several age-related vulnerabilities which may account for high gambling frequency in this population.

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