The legal definition of when young people can gamble once they are over 16 years for lotteries and 18 years for sports and bingo, etc. However,
Young People do gamble under the age of 16. In the majority of cases this is a normal part of a young person development. However,
in a few circumstances it can be defined as problematic gambling.
It is estimated that 1.7% young people (aged 11-16 years of age) will be classified as problematic gamblers and a
further 2.2% are at risk of developing problematic gambling behaviour.
Some common betting terms;
Skin gambling - Many online games used by children contain skins such as costumes and
camouflages that users can use to customise their in game avatar and weapons. Some skins are more
common than others. There are a number of casino-style websites that allow players to export their
collection of skins to use as currency. Players can cash out their skins for real money. According
to the Gambling Commission skin gambling sites must be licensed and have an age verification process,
but in reality few skin gambling sites are licensed.
Loot Boxes - These are virtual treasure chests in online videos. Users don’t usually know
what is in the box so some people think they introduce gambling like behaviours in children. The Gambling
Commission sees them as football cards rather than gambling.
E-sports - Electronic sports are competitive video games played online. Children and young
people often watch them and there is an emerging market of unregulated gambling sites relating to skins.
In play betting - Betting that occurs when the event is ongoing.
Fixed odds - your guarantee that your potential return bet will not change.
Signs to look out around problematic gambling in children;
There is no one indicator that identifies a child with gambling problems. Here are some signs to look out for;
- The person often thinks about gambling activities at odd times of day.
- They lie to their family or friends to hide how much they have gambled.
- The spend money on gambling activities in an attempt to win their money back.
- They spend school dinner money and bus money on gambling activity.
- They have taken money from someone they live with without them knowing to gamble.
- They gamble as a way of escaping problems.>
- They find they need to spend more and more money on gambling activities.
- The person becomes restless, tense, fed up or bad tempered when trying to cut down or stop gambling.
- The person misses school to participate in gambling activities more than five times.
There are some great websites that supports parents and professionals around gambling.
Be Gamble Aware: https://www.begambleaware.org
This website offers general gambling support website for advice and a helpline for support.
General website that provide advice and a helpline if you’re worried about gambling support. It has self-help resources.
Parent Zone and Gamble Aware: https://parentzone.org.uk/knowthestakes
Provides a pack to download for parents/professionals in relation to support around gambling.
Free Online Self Exclusion: https://www.gamstop.co.uk/
A website for self-exclusion from online betting websites.