Lottery Gambling and Demographic Factors

lottery gambling

Lottery gambling is a major source of state revenue. Although lottery proponents argue that lottery revenues help all residents of a state, it is also a controversial issue for many. Opponents claim that lotteries prey on minorities and create addictive gamblers.

There is some evidence that lottery play is correlated with lower income. However, the findings do not support the claim that lottery gambling makes people addicted.

A study compared lottery gambling to substance use and other problem behaviors among individuals 18 years and older. The researchers found that males were more involved in problem behaviors than females. They were also more likely to have less education and less income than non-gamblers.

The researchers looked at various demographic factors that may have an influence on gambling, including age and race/ethnicity. While race/ethnicity had an effect on the rate of lottery play, it was not significant. Likewise, the incidence rate ratio of lottery gambling was not significantly different between whites and blacks.

Age was found to have a curvilinear relationship with lottery play. It was higher among adults over 50 and lower in the young adult group.

In the upper third of the SES bracket, the mean amount of days gambled increased from adolescence to middle age and then declined. However, in the lower third of the SES bracket, there was an increase from adolescence to thirties and a decline in the forties.

Interestingly, very heavy lottery players were found to be the oldest and to have a higher mean income. They were also more risk-taking and fantasized about greater amounts than light lottery players. This group of individuals also engaged in other forms of gambling.