On a recent edition of the Emmy award-winning Another Thing with Larry Mendte, Neva Pryor, the Executive Director of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey, came in for an interview. Gambling is not a new issue, and neither is addiction. But you’d be surprised about how gambling has evolved over the years and who it is affecting the most.
The advent of the Internet has changed gambling forever. You can use your desktop, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. With these devices more prevalent now than ever, you can gamble whenever you want, wherever you want, as long as there is an Internet connection. People are gambling at work, in their cars and at home. All you have to do is reach into your pocket.
Some viewers were surprised to learn that Pryor highlighted senior citizens as a prominent group having problems with compulsive gambling. As she continued to explain, it all started to add up. Here are some reasons she touched upon:
- Baby boom – Today’s senior citizens were baby boomers. Not only is their generation a large one, but a wealthy one. They have plenty of disposable income.
- Coping Mechanism – As people grow older, they lose people close to them (parents, spouse, siblings, friends) and need a way to cope with their losses.
- Boredom – With less loved ones around and no work to do, some of them just need to pass the time. With less time left to live, their money isn’t as important to them.
- Socialization – Many retirement homes and senior citizen communities organize trips to casinos for gambling at Atlantic City among other places. These trips help them cope with their loneliness. They can be amongst a group of their peers spending time together. Receiving circulars and comps make them feel like the casinos care about them. The social aspect is common with addictions of other kinds.
To watch the full interview, head to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vbuBpztWHLE.
Whether it’s placing bets online, or it’s off-track wagering at Favorites, disordered gambling has many forms, all of which can be a serious problem. If you or someone you know needs helps, call the CCGNJ’s 24/7 hotline at 1-800-GAMBLER or visit their website at http://www.800gambler.org/.