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Salud mental

Print version ISSN 0185-3325


VILLATORO VELAZQUEZ, Jorge Ameth et al. Magnitude and extent of gambling disorder in the Mexican population. Salud Ment [online]. 2018, vol.41, n.4, pp.157-167. ISSN 0185-3325.


Gambling disorder is characterized by an uncontrollable need to gamble, lack of control over gambling, prioritizing gambling over other activities, and continuing to gamble despite the negative consequences this entails. Worldwide, between .1% and 5% of people show signs of problem gambling and between .1% and 2.2% present a positive result in gambling disorder criteria.


To determine the extent of the problem of gambling disorder in Mexico and to identify and analyze the demographic groups in which it occurs.


ENCODAT 2016-2017 is a probabilistic, multi-stage survey with national and state representativeness. The sample comprises 56 877 people who answered a standardized questionnaire that collects information on addictive substance use and other areas such as gambling disorder.


A total of 24.5% of the population aged 12 to 65 have played a betting game at lifetime. Men have higher statistically significant prevalences than women in nearly all types of gambling and in six of the nine symptoms of gambling disorder. In Mexico, .3% of the target population meet the criteria for gambling disorder, with adolescents showing the highest percentage (.4%).

Discussion and conclusion:

It is necessary to reinforce public policies for this issue that include the development of preventive actions targeting the adolescent and youth population in Mexico, and to ensure the adequate monitoring of authorized centers.

Keywords : Gambling disorder; survey; Mexico; betting types.

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