Increase gambling risk of Iowans

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — A new study from the Iowa Department of Public Health shows an increase an Iowans that experience problem gambling.

The study shows over 1.7 million Iowans gambled in the last 12 months. About 19 percent of those people are classified as at risk, meaning they exhibit symptoms of gambling addiction. Both numbers are up from a 2015 survey.

The at-risk number is also high than the overall at-risk percentage of 13 percent.

According to the IDPH, some symptoms of problem gambling include preoccupied with gambling and restless or irritable when not gambling, secretive about gambling habits, increasing bet amounts when gambling in order to achieve the desired excitement, trying unsuccessfully to control, cut back or stop gambling, gambling to escape problems, chasing losses with more gambling, committing crimes to finance gambling, jeopardizing or losing relationships, jobs, education or career opportunities because of gambling and relying on others to relieve a desperate financial situation caused by gambling.

The University of Northern Iowa Center for Social and Behavioral Research prepared a report that included sports betting and fantasy sports. The report found around nine percent of Iowans either bet on sports or played fantasy sports. This group displayed Iowans being classified as at-risk gamblers at 23 percent. That percentage is higher than the overall gambling at-risk percentage of 13 percent.

For more information on gambling addictions or assist you or someone you know with a gambling addiction, click here. To see the entire Gambling Attitudes and Behaviors: A 2018 Survey of Adult Iowans report, click here.

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