Although gambling is generally an “adult” problem, a rising number of adolescents are also engaged in this dangerous activity. Teenagers possess qualities that make them susceptible to trying out gambling.

Developmentally, teenagers are impulsive and may do things without thinking about the consequences of their actions. They are also prone to engage in pleasure-seeking, risk-taking behaviors. Those who gamble to experience the thrill of such behaviors are the "action" gamblers. "Lakas ng loob" is another trait many teens possess that contributes to their desire to gamble.

There are people whose personalities are easily swayed by outside factors. These are what you may consider as "madaling ma-bad" influence because of their need to feel they’re a part of something. And for adolescents, they want to be part of something they think is cool.

Aside from some traits that predispose teenagers to gambling, why else would they want to wager their allowance or gadgets on these games? In most cases, money is not the primary reason. Adolescents are very restless. Some deal with boredom by playing computer games or sports, but for some, it’s gambling.

The consequences of compulsive betting go beyond the risk of losing money and personal possessions.

Just like doing drugs, juvenile gambling is a vice that can damage your kid’s life. Here are signs that your child has turned to gambling, ways to prevent it, and what to do about it.

These articles can give you more tips on dealing with your sensitive parenting issues:
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(First published in Good Housekeeping Magazine, Special Report section as "Raising Stakes, Losing Bids" in July 2007; adapted for use in Female Network)
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