Journal of Gambling Studies

, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 41–64

A Gender-based Examination of Past-year Recreational Gamblers

  • Marc N. Potenza
  • Paul K. Maciejewski
  • Carolyn M. Mazure

DOI: 10.1007/s10899-005-9002-4

Cite this article as:
Potenza, M.N., Maciejewski, P.K. & Mazure, C.M. J Gambl Stud (2006) 22: 41. doi:10.1007/s10899-005-9002-4



Most adults gamble recreationally yet few studies have systematically investigated for gender-related differences in recreational gamblers.


Logistic regression analyses were performed on data from a nationally representative sample of respondents from the 1998 Gambling Impact and Behavior Study.


Female gamblers versus non-gamblers were more likely to report use of alcohol and drugs. Male gamblers versus non-gamblers were more likely to report alcohol use and abuse/dependence, any substance abuse/dependence, and lifetime incarceration. An analysis of gambling by gender group interaction effects did not identify significant differences in health-related measures. Male as compared with female gamblers reported beginning gambling earlier, experiencing higher past-year maximal losses and wins, and finding favorite and engaging in different types of gambling.


Despite heavier gambling in male as compared with female recreational gamblers, similar mental health functioning was observed in female and male past-year recreational gamblers. Types of gambling problematic for men and women are reflected in the gambling preferences of recreational gamblers.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marc N. Potenza
    • 1
    • 2
  • Paul K. Maciejewski
    • 1
  • Carolyn M. Mazure
    • 1
  1. 1.Yale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA
  2. 2.Connecticut Mental Health CentreNew HavenUSA