Since becoming legal in the year 2022, online sports betting has become a trend for young adults, especially those in college.
The engagement of online sports betting has grown as companies such as DraftKings and Fanduel have made mobile apps, now accessible through the swipe of a finger.
Salisbury University student Jeremy Carr said that already having the access to social media and sports information made the jump to online sports betting easy for students.
“We all have access to social media, a lot of us follow sports very closely,” Carr said. “We have a deep understanding of the sports world because of the amount of information we have access to like streaming services and pretty much an unlimited supply of games.”
The apps provided to students combined with the knowledge they have has allowed some to collect big rewards while betting on games.
Student Julien Glaeser thinks the feeling of winning might encourage people to place multiple bets after seeing the first bet go through.
“You hit a bet and the money comes in and you kind of get excited,” Glaeser said. “Maybe you bet another time, it’s fun”.
As students continue to place bets and see instant reward, an expectation to win could create a risk to a student’s physical and mental health.
A risk as serious as a gambling addiction.
“Jeez, you hear me talk about what it’s like to win, people can definitely get addicted to that kind of thing,” Glaser said. “Things can definitely get dangerous, you see part of those commercials when they advertise it and say, 'call 1-800' like they know.”
The serious risk of addiction may be unclear to students if they only see sports betting as an easy way to get easy cash.
Associate professor and chair of psychology at Salisbury University Dr. Meredith Patterson said younger people more accessible to gambling addictions, especially when available on devices.
Patterson said it looks like we have more younger people who are struggling with addictive behaviors with sports like gambling.
“They are having that pull towards abusive behaviors that suggest that if they are not addictive, that they are addicting,” Patterson said. “So now that it is now legal for young adults who are still forming their prefrontal cortex, they are still being wired to figure out planning, good decision making, consequences for actions, so it could be a little bit dangerous.”
By ZACK WEATHERBEE
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